South African breaststroker Cameron van der Burgh has retired from competitive swimming.
The 30-year-old made the announcement during his post-race press conference on Wednesday after winning the World Short Course Championship in the men’s 100m breaststroke.
‘It is an amazing flashback to see a long way ago when I was a still young kid with a lot of dreams,’ he said. ‘It has been amazing to fulfil those dreams but today is the day I announce my retirement.
‘I couldn’t be more happy with the outcome of my last race tonight. I have won the 100m breast gold medal here in Hangzhou tonight and I feel very blessed to be here in this room with my family and coach.’
Van der Burgh had previously said that he would retire after the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo but getting married in July and accepting a new job at Andurand Capital Management, a large oil-focused hedge fund based in London, changed his mind.
Van der Burgh won an Olympic silver medal in the 100 breaststroke at the 2016 Olympic Games and a gold medal in the same event in 2012.
.@Cameronvdburgh retires from swimming on top after winning another world title taking his total to 5 gold, 1 Olympic Gold and 9 World Records! More than that he always stayed a true gentlemen and outstanding ambassador for South Africa and the sport of swimming. ??????
— Ryk Neethling (@RykNeethling) December 12, 2018