Le Clos Wins Two More; Sebastien Rousseau Hits Commonwealth Games Standard on Day 4 of SA Nationals

Day 4 of the 2014 South African National Championships saw one name added to the Commonwealth Games roster, as American-based Sebastien Rousseau cleared the qualifying standard in the 400 IM. In addition, the qualifier of this event, Chad le Clos, took two more wins, bringing his total on the week top 5 wins already.

Qualifying Times for the 2014 Commonwealth Games

Men’s Standard Women’s Standard
22.33 50 m Freestyle 25.34
48.93 100 m Freestyle 54.86
1.48:42 200 m Freestyle 1.58:74
3.49:55 400 m Freestyle 4.09:81
800 m Freestyle 8.34:33
15.14:38 1500 m Freestyle
54.43 100 m Backstroke 1.01:39
1.58:48 200 m Backstroke 2.11:09
1.00:86 100 m Breaststroke 1.08:63
2.12:78 200 m Breaststroke 2.27:88
52.57 100 m Butterfly 58.89
1.57:03 200 m Butterfly 2.09:38
1.59:99 200 m Ind. Medley 2.14:97
4.18:99 400 m Ind. Medley 4.44:53

Women’s 100 Fly – FINALS

18-year old Marne Erasmus went under a minute for the third time of this meet in the final of the women’s 100 fly, but she still came up about half-a-second short of the required time to qualify for the Commonwealth Games with a 59.43. She was joined by 19-year old Vanessa Mohr, who swam a 59.92 for 2nd.

Those two teens are the future of this event in South Africa, and with both clearly motivated to contend with the best in the world, this could be a lost opportunity for valuable experience heading into the crucial 2015 and 2016 seasons.

Men’s 100 Free – FINALS

Chad Le Clos’ night began with a 49.38 in the 100 free. He was on the wrong side of the pack going into the turn in this race, but he’s got significantly better closing speed than anybody else in this race.

Neither he, nor anybody else, were under the qualifying standard, however. Brett Walsh took 2nd in 50.17, and Leith Shankland matched his semi-finals time with a 50.23 for 3rd.

18-year old Caydon Muller (50.25) and 17-year old Joshua Steyn (50.62) took 4th-and-5th, respectively.

Men’s 400 IM – FINALS

Chad le Clos won his second-straight non-Multi Class final of the session with a 4:14.81 in the 400 IM. Le Clos didn’t swim this race at last year’s Nationals or at Worlds, but with not much competition at the Commonwealth Games, he might use it as an opportunity to rack up another gold medal this summer in Glasgow.

Joining him on the Commonwealth Games qualifying list in the event is Sebastien Rousseau, who took 2nd in 4:18.17. He didn’t swim this event (or any, for that matter) at last year’s Nationals either. The defending champion, Michael Meyer, didn’t fare so well, as he was 8 seconds slower than last year for 4th place.

Women’s 800 Free – FINALS

17-year old Michelle Weber took her 2nd event title of the day, but still is without Commonwealth Game qualification after an 8:46.16 in the women’s 800 freestyle final.

She did most of her work early to win this race over Caitlin Kat, who was 2nd in 8:49.23. The only other swimmer under 9 minutes in the race was Kyna Pereira, who swam an 8:58.12 for 3rd.

Men’s 800 Free – FINALS (non-qualifying)

17-year old Brent Szurdoki won the men’s 800 free in 8:11.42, followed by Danie Marais (8:19.37) and Matthew Meyer (8:21.93).

Qualifying After 3 Days

Chad le Clos (200 fly, 200 back, 400 IM)
Dylan Bosch (200 fly)
Myles Brown (400 free)
Cameron van der Burgh (100 breast)
Sebastien Rousseau (400 IM)

Karin Prinsloo (100 free, 200 free)

Semi-Finals and Relays

  • In the men’s 50 breaststroke semi-final, Cameron van der Burgh and training partner Giulio Zorzi took the top two spots in 27.05 and 27.85, respectively. Those are two of the three medalists in the event from Worlds last year. The next two seeds are based out of American colleges: Jared Pike from Florida State and Brad Tandy from Arizona.
  • In the women’s 50 backstroke semi-final, Jessica Ashley-Cooper easily took the top seed in 29.19. Jamie Reynolds was 2nd in 29.98.
  • Franko Jonker, who won the women’s 200 breaststroke on Wednesday, will take the middle lane into the final of the 100 breaststroke with a 1:09.02. This should be a hotly-contested final; Tara Nicholas is the 2nd seed in 1:09.05, and Justine Macfarlane was 3rd in 1:09.33.
  • Charl Crous holds the top spot after the semi-finals of the men’s 100 back with a 54.90. That’s half-a-second away from the qualifying standard, with a 54.43 target for finals

Full, live meet results available here.

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8 years ago

On one hand le Clos has 5 National titles and a medal already with the 100 fly and 200 IM remaining. On the other hand, with the exception of the 200 fly, his times have been somewhat pedestrian.

If he wants to be the greatest swimmer on the planet, he’s going to have to accept that he doesn’t have the depth of events. At the end of the day in a lot of the events he’s winning he has timed that put him in the 10-20 mix of the world rankings. Events he’s good at but not good enough to crack into the top-10 level that can win International medals or the top 5 level that contends for World… Read more »

Reply to  mcgillrocks
8 years ago

Based on what we saw last year at Worlds and Asian games.. Sun can go sub 1:44 withouth needing much to improve..

He will probably try this year to go sub 14:30 and then put some focus on breaking 3:40 and 1:44… His 1500 is probably pretty safe even if he swim a slow (for him ) 14:34 14:35

8 years ago

Le Clos will rack up 400 IM gold medal in CWG?

Not so fast.

Fraser-Holmes is almost 5 seconds faster.

Reply to  aswimfan
8 years ago

I gont think Fraser-Holmes is 5 seconds faster. Le Clos is obviously not rested at all. Fraser-Holmes on the other hand was probably fully tapered.
Chad’s personal best is 4:12 and I think he will improve on that big time by Commonwealth games time

Reply to  TexasSwimmer
8 years ago

You are right. I forgot about his 4:12 from London.
However, Glasgow will be the first time he swim a full schedule in a major championships, so we will see how it affects him. Fortunately for him, 400 IM will be on his first day along with 200 free, and his main competitor Fraser-Holmes will also swim the 200 free.

8 years ago

I remember watching Marne Erasmus in 2011 and thinking her technical skills were brilliant… She won a few medals and wiped the floor with a very good 50m ‘Fly field which included Rachael Kelly (Youth Commies), who is now swimming 26. & 58. week in week out. Vanessa Mohr seemed to have great potential two or three years back, too. The potential is there for Erasmus. Le Clos as dominant as ever.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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