Team South Africa started the day’s action flushed with success after winning nine medals in bowls, swimming and track action the previous day. That took their tally to 18. Here’s what happened on Tuesday.
Men’s 400m hurdles, Heat One: Constant Pretorius was unable to make it through to the next round in these his first Games. He ended fourth in the first of three heats with a time of 49.71 seconds as only the top two in each heat went through. Winning time was 48.78 by Kyron McMaster of the British Virgin Island.
Men’s 400m hurdles, Heat Three: LJ van Zyl was off in the third and final heat and although the South African started well he faded drastically to end fifth in 50.98sec, as Nicholas Bett won in 49.24. These look like they could be the long-serving 32-year-old athlete’s final Commonwealth Games and indeed, he looked a far cry from the young buck who set the Games record of 48.05, a mark which stands to this day, and was set on the same continent – Melbourne back in 2006.
Men’s long jump, qualifying round: Group A: South Africa had two very real medal contenders jumping for the right to contest the final. Neither Ruswahl Samaai nor Luvo Manyonga disappointed as they recorded two solid attempts without wasting too much energy on a hot Gold Coast morning. Samaai was in Group A and his one jump saw him landing at 8.06, the best of his group. Manyonga gave even less away and was pegged at 7.91. That earned him third spot as Aussie Henry Frayne gave the locals something to shout about with a Games record of 8.34m! Manyonga’s mark was third in the group and the two South Africans go into Wednesday’s final as second and sixth best qualifiers.
Women’s 400m hurdles, Round One, Heat Two: Wenda Nel was the only South African in this discipline and to be honest her performance looked pretty much the best of the Saffas in morning action. Despite coming second in heat two, behind Jamaican Janieve Russell (54.01) she looked in total control of her run as she clocked 54.61 for a season’s best (even though Games computers didn’t pick it up). If anyone knows, she should. That put her straight through to Thursday’s final. ‘I just wanted to make sure I qualified for the final so that job’s done. I executed my plan quite well – it’s a fast track, nice hot conditions and I had fun out there. I held back after a start which may have been a bit fast but after the 10th I knew I had my spot in the final.’
Men’s 200m, Heat Six: All class was Clarence Munyai as he cantered to victory in 20.95sec. He had the luxury of knowing he was clear coming off the bend already. Earlier there’d been a false start but it didn’t faze Munyai as he easily beat England’s Richard Kilty (21.08). ‘I knew it wasn’t me,’ said Munyai. ‘I wait and sit till I hear the gun. I know guys don’t easily get away from me at the start so I knew the guy must have false-started. I just did enough to get to the semis. It’s a fast track, a bit like London so today was all about cruise control and being ready for the semi.’
Men’s 200m, Heat Seven: It was job done for Anaso Jobodwana as he followed his compatriot through to the semi-finals with victory in even quicker fashion than his young countryman. He clocked 20.89 from Kiwi Joseph Millar (21.10). Both Jobodwana and Munyai went through automatically as winners and didn’t have to hang around for any anxious waiting. ‘I did a lot of looking around today to see what was going on,’ joked Jobodwana. ‘My left hamstring was a bit tight so I just wanted to get into the semi and then push it faster then. It’s my first time running a big 200m in the outside lane so that was a bit different.’ More on the hamstring: ‘I did a stupid thing, after a long red-eye flight from Perth we got here at 5am and I was on the track at 10am and it was quite tense. The good thing is that I didn’t feel it all today, so I’m now happy and looking forward to the semis.’
Men’s 110m hurdles final: Antonio Alkana was unable to build on his form in the heats and ended fifth in a time of 13.49sec as Jamaica hurtled to a 1-2, courtesy of Ronald Levy (13.19) and Hansie Parchment (13.22). ‘I had a good start but hit a hurdle early on and lost my rhythm a bit and in a race as technical as this it’s incredibly hard to come back – you have to be smooth as possible.I’m still happy to make the final here – wow, the tension in final something else, but I really wanted to medal here, it would have opened up so many more doors for me in Europe.’
Women’s 1500m final: Caster Semenya had to wait more than 10 minutes before she got down to business but when the gun finally went off at a sodden Carrara Stadium it was ALL business as she raced to the gold medal, a new Commonwealth Games record, and a new national mark of 4min 00.72sec. Timing her move to perfection, she opened up the throttle with just over 200m to go and there was no stopping her as she went on to win by almost 2.5sec over Kenyan Beatric Chepkoech with Wales’ Melissa Courtney a surprise bronze medallist in 3:03:44. Semenya’s time beat Zola Pieterse’s 34-year-old mark, set in Port Elizabeth, by 0.09sec.
Women’s singles, Round of 64: South Africa’s Johanita Scholtz went down to England’s Chloe Birch 2-0 (21-5 2-18) in a match at the Carrara Arena which saw the first game lasting nine minutes and the second two minutes longer.
Mixed Doubles, Round of 64: South Africa’s Cameron Coetzer and Michelle Butler-Emmet accounted for Mauritius with a score of 2-1. The South Africans lost the first game 21-18 to Aatish Lubah and Nick Chan-Lam. That was the longest game of the three, at 12 minutes and Coetzer and Butler-Emmet then roared back to take the next two games (and the match) with scores of 21-15 and 21-10.
Singles, Round of 64: Coetzer later went down to African compatriot Edwin Ekiring of Uganda. The score was 21-10 and 21-14 with games lasting 14 and 15 minutes respectively.
Singles, Round of 64: There was a second win of the day for the SA contingent as Vijayanath beat Fiji’s Burty Molia in straight games, 21-12, 21-10, both games lasting 10 minutes.
Singles, Round of 64: Bongani van Bodenstein went down to Kean Yew Loh, the Singapore player winning 2-0 with game scores of 21-11 21-9. The young Tuks student will nevertheless be soaking up the experience of his first major multi-code games after 21 minutes of action.
Mixed doubles, Round of 64: South Africa’s Prakash Vijayanath and Johanita Scholtz beat their Zambian counterparts Changa Mulenga and Everlyn Siamumpangial 2-0. Game scores were 21-8 21-16 and the action was all done in 17min!
Women’s Pairs, Section A, Round Two: South Africa (Nicolene Neal and Colleen Piketh) bt Northern Ireland 20-12. They had to come back from a 0-5 deficit after four ends but got back on track right away and after the 12th end Northern Ireland were unable to add to their tally.
Men’s Singles, Section D, Round Three: Petrus Breitenbach got the better of Paniani (Cook Islands), winning with a score of 21-19 after hitting the lead on the 23rd and penultimate end.
Men’s Singles, Section D, Round Four: Breitenbach then lost his next match, going down to the host nation’s Aaron Wilson. Breitenbach lead for the first two ends but the Aussie relentlessly piled on the pressure to end up winning 21-6.
Mixed B2/B3 Pairs, Semi-final: South Africa’s Princess Schreuder and Philippus Walker, directed as ever by Graham Ward and Johanna van Rooyen beat Wales 11-9 to book their spot in the gold medal match. It was only from the 12th end (locked at 8-8) that the South Africans finally edged ahead.
Women’s Triples, Section D, Round Three: South Africa’s Elma Davis, Esme Kruger, Johanna Snyman went down 28 -11 to England. The South Africans were on the back foot from the very first end and in fact, never got ahead throughout the entire match
Men’s Singles, Section D, Round Five: Petrus Breitenbach posted victory in this third match of the day. His record going into this game was 1-1 and he turned that into a winning average by beating Phillip Jones (Norfolk Islands) 21-13. It was fairly evenly matched until the 13th end when the South African started pulling away.
Men’s Fours, Section B, Round Two: Another solid win for South Africa as Gerry Baker, Jason Evans, Rudi Jacobs, Morgan Muvhango) thumped Norfolk Islands 25-7. The SA quartet got off to a rollicking start and by the time the Pacific Islanders got onto the scoreboard, SA were already 14 shots clear!
Manager’s take (Stewart Carson): ‘It was a tough day for the young ones (Cameron, Bongani and Nita) in the team as they all lost singles first round. Prakash won his first round and plays No6 seed from Mauritius, and African champ next. He also won his XD (Mixed doubles) with Nita. Michelle and Elmé play WD tomorrow and should win as should MD of Prakash and Coetzer.’
Men’s 64kg, Quarter-final: Fighting for the chance to get a guaranteed medal, Sinethemba Blom lost on points to Jessie Lartey (Ghana). Fighting out of the blue corner Blom went down 3-1 in a split decision on the judge’s scorecards. The Australian and Japanese judges gave Blom the verdict with scores of 30-27 and 29-28 respectively but the Trinidad & Tobago, Welsh and Moldovian officials all saw it differently. By most accounts it was a most unpopular decision with some prominent officials calling the result ‘utter nonsense’.
Men’s individual time trial: South Africa’s sole representative to start, Brendon Davids ended 10th of 53 finishers with a time of 51min 44.00sec over the 38.5km trial along the Currumbin Beachfront. That put him 3:30.96 behind Cameron Meyer of Australia. Davids was in the mix in the early stages but then dropped his chain just after the big hill of the course. Davids’ fellow South African Nicholas Dlamini didn’t start, with his focus on the road race later in the Games and is also nursing a tired knee. ‘It’s a bitter-sweet result for me,’ said Davids. ‘It was probably my best time trial ever in terms of performance but unfortunately I had an issue out on course and lost a big chunk of time having to slow down and stop and try and get going again and it was on a pretty fast piece of the course. But at the end of the day it’s part and parcel of what we do in cycling and I’ll take the positives and roll with it.’
Women’s Pool A: South Africa came back down to earth after having beaten Wales in their previous clash. It was a narrow defeat, just one goal separating the teams. The winner came in the 47h minute from Indian skipper Rani.
Women’s Pool A: South Africa had a resounding 92-28 win over the Pacific Islanders. Racked by injuries these Games as they lost two top goalshooters in Lenize Potgieter and Danelle Lochner before the first game, they’ve been up against it from the beginning. Losing wing defence Precious Mthembu due to a family tragedy and injury also didn’t help their cause. Up 22-9 after the first quarter the Proteas piled it on and their next quarter scores were: 24-5 21-7 25-7. Replacement goalshooter Sigi Burger stamped her authority on proceedings throughout and ended with 56 goals.
Men’s heavyweight: Ricardo Fitzpatrick ended seventh in the men’s heavyweight division, held at the Carrara Sports Arena. He ended with a total of 152.1 points with successful attempts of 160 and 167kg. Winner was Abdulazeez Ibrahim of Nigeria, a bigger man than Kimberley’s Fitzpatrick and 9kg heavier. He had lifts of 210 and 220kg.
PARA TABLE TENNIS
Men’s TT6-10, Singles, Group Two: Theo Cogill, the man who survived a near-fatal stabbing a few years back had an easy opening match win as he overcame Temitope Ogunsanya. He beat the Nigerian 3-0 (11-4 11-4 11-2) at the Oxenford Studios, also the venue for boxing.
Queen’s Prize Pairs Final: After being right up in the running on Monday’s first day of competition the SA duo of Petrus Haasbroek and Jacobus du Toit were again right up there but faded to fourth of 16 teams, just outside of medal contention. They ended with a score of 581 with 53 V-Bulls. England went on win with 581-61V-Bulls. It was a British 1-2-3 on the podium as Wales and Scotland took silver and bronze.
Women’s 400m Freestyle, Heats: Duné Coetzee took to the water in the second of the three heats. She had come into the event with a time of 4:14.40, but swam slightly outside of that, clocking 4:15.21 in her heat for sixth place and an overall 11th on the time sheets, which left her outside the eight for the final. In the third heat, Kate Beavon and Kristin Bellingan were at opposite sides of the pool, in lanes eight and one, respectively. Beavon finished sixth in 4:17.59, with Bellingan eighth in 4:20.92. That left them 12th and 15th overall and missing out on the final.
Men’s 50m freestyle, Final: SILVER! Brad Tandy produced what he called ‘the best result of my life, if not my best time, and performance-wise it’s in the top three,’ after winning the silver medal in 28.81. Ben Proud touched the wall first in 21.35. Behind Tandy were three Australians and this was a huge achievement in front of a big, partisan home crowd. Tandy led early before Proud claimed the lead but the South African stayed committed and has a silver for reward.
1500m Freestyle, Final: Brent Szurdoki went into the final with a No4 seeding after an entry time of 15:11.22. And fourth is where he finished, in 15:28.60. Australia’s Jack McLoughlin won in 14:47.09 followed by Daniel Jervis (14:48.67) and Mack Horton (14:51.05)
Men’s 200m Individual Medley, Heats: There wasn’t any luck for South Africa’s three representatives. Fastest of them was Jarryd Baxter, who finished third in his heat in 2:02.23. Ayrton Sweeney (2:03.19) and Eben Vorster (2:07.11) were fifth and sixth in their respective heats, but none of them were quick enough to make the final eight. They placed 11th, 15th and 17th overall, with the cut off being 2:01.78.
Men’s 4x100m Medley Relay, Heats: South Africa sent in their ‘reserves’ for the heats, the prime goal being to qualify for the evening’s final where, once Chad le Clos and Cameron van der Burgh are added to the mix, suddenly it’s a squad that has serious medal potential. Martin Binedell, Michael Houlie, Ryan Coetzee and Calvyn Justus got the job done in the heats, combining for 3:42.44. Ahead of them on the timesheets were Australia, England, Scotland and Canada. They would have been be looking over their shoulders …
Final: Both Chad le Clos and Cameron van der Burgh came into the team to strengthen it after they had finished fifth fastest in the morning qualifying. It always looked as though Australia and England were going to be the countries to fight out gold and silver, with Scotland and South Africa contesting the bronze. Which is the way it turned out, with Le Clos swimming a superb third leg (50.10) to give SA the necessary advantage over Scotland, which Brad Tandy (49.70) managed to protect on the freestyle closing leg. SA clocked 3:34.79, with Scotland fourth in 3:35.15.
Women’s 4x100m Medley, Final: Swimming in lane one, Nathania van Niekerk, Kaylene Corbett, Erin Gallagher and Emma Chelius finished seventh in 4:12.02, with Australia breaking the Games record in 3:54.36.
Compiled by Mark Etheridge and Gary Lemke
Photo: Cameron Coetzer and Michelle Butlet-Emmet in badminton action against Mauritius, by Wessel Oosthuizen/SASPA