Cape Town — In an otherwise quiet morning of heats on Day 4 at the 14th FINA World Swimming short course Championships in Hangzhou, China, Team South Africa did qualify for their first relay final on Friday.
In fact it was the very first relay that SA had entered at the championships.
Swimming in Lane 6 of Heat 1 of the men's 4x50m freestyle, the quartet of Bradley Tandy , Chad le Clos , Douglas Erasmus and Ryan Coetzee finished third in a time of 1:25.10.
That time was good enough for fifth overall - and a spot in Friday's final (13:00 SA time).
Italy, winners of that same heat, led the way, exactly one second quicker than the SA team.
Shortly thereafter, both Le Clos and Coetzee were back in the pool for the heats of the men's 50m butterfly - and there was further good news as the pair progressed to the semi-finals.
Drawn in the same 10th heat (of 11), Le Clos emerged victorious in a time of 22.67, with Coetzee touching the wall in third (22.79).
When all was said and done, Le Clos wound up with the fourth quickest overall time, with Coetzee in a tie for sixth.
World record holder in the event, Brazil's Nicholas Santos, led the way with his 22.41.
Elsewhere, Emily Visagie , swimming in her first event of the championships, finished in 34th place out of the 49 starters for the women's 100m breaststroke.
Visagie's time of 1:09.46 was a full 5.70 slower than the leading mark set by American Katie Meili (1:03.76).
Read this report on News24Wire.com.
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