SA National Championships: Erin Gallagher Wraps Up Meet with 50 Free Title

Matthew Sates of South Africa competes in the 400m Individual Medley Men Final during the FINA Swimming Short Course World Championships at the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre in Melbourne, Australia, December 17th, 2022. Photo Giorgio Scala / Deepbluemedia / Insidefoto
Matt Sates; Photo Courtesy: Giorgio Scala / Deepbluemedia / Insidefoto

SA National Championships: Erin Gallagher Wraps Up Meet with 50 Free Title

Erin Gallagher capped an excellent meet at the SA National Championships on Saturday by edging Caitlin De Lange by .01 in the 50 free.

Gallagher went 24.95. She overcame De Lange, who had set the pace in prelims at 24.98 and went .02 seconds quicker in finals. Jessica Thompson was a distant third in 25.41.

The final day of the meet at Newton Park Swimming Pool in Ggeberha produced no new Olympic A cuts for the South African contingent. Pieter Coetzee won the men’s 50 free in 22.45, defending his top seed from prelims, when he was quicker in 22.36. He was well ahead of Clayton Jimmie, who went 22.58 in the morning and 22.83 at night.

Fresh off her Olympic qualification in the 200 free, Aimee Canny threatened the mark in the 200 individual medley. She went 2:12.23, which is a tenth shy of the B cut. The A cut in the event is 2:11.47.

Second in the event was Tatjana Smith (nee Tatjana Schoenmaker). She went 2:13.88. Dakota Tucker was third.

Matt Sates won the men’s 200 IM in 1:59.98. His margin of victory over Henju Duvenhage was nearly two seconds, but it was well shy of the Olympic A cut of1:57.94.

Stephanie Houtman was quickest in the women’s 1,500 free at 16:41.20. The top seed in the event, Dune Coetzee, was more than a minute and a half shy of her seed, finishing ninth and barely breaking 18 minutes. Kris Mihaylov led the fastest head of the men’s 800 free in 8:09.51.

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