RPT-OLY-VANDERBURGH-LD-REAX

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Associated Press

Posted on July 30, 2012 at 4:31 AM

RPT-OLY-VANDERBURGH-LD-REAX

JOHANNESBURG July 30 Sapa

SA PROUD OF VAN DER BURGH

(SUBS/NEDS: REPEATS FOR SPORT; HAS ALREADY MOVED ON NEWS WIRE)

Swimmer Cameron van der Burgh became the pride of South Africa after securing the country's first Olympic gold medal in eight years at the London Games.

The Young Communist League said on Monday that Van der Burgh's win was an inspiration.

"1/8It3/8 strengthens our belief that winning the expected 12 medals is possible," said YCLSA national spokesman Mangaliso Khonza.

Van der Burgh secured the gold medal in London on Sunday when he won the 100-metre breaststroke with a world-record time of 58.46 seconds.

His record was 0.12 seconds faster than the previous record held by Australian Brenton Rickard, making him South Africa's first men's individual Olympic swimming champion.

He qualified for the final on Saturday when he won his semi-final by breaking the previous South African, African and Olympic records with a time of 58.95.

The YCLSA also wished swimmer Chad le Clos well in the 200 metres butterfly on Monday afternoon.

The Congress of the People Youth Movement said Van der Burgh's performance was the motivation South Africa needed to throw its support behind the national Olympic team.

"Yesterday 1/8Sunday3/8 South Africans went to bed with a big smile and a sense of pride... thanks to Cameron van der Burgh," it said.

"This will certainly give other South African athletes the springs to bring home more medals, surpassing the 12 medals target set." The City of Tshwane also congratulated Van der Burgh.

"In true Tshwane-style, Van der Burgh ignited excellence by beating a stellar field in the 100-metre breaststroke with a world-record time of 58.46 seconds," it said in a statement.

"On behalf of the 2.5 million residents of the capital city of South Africa, we would like to congratulate Cameron on his magnificent performance." The City of Tshwane said Van der Burgh was the pride of the continent.

"City-based Van der Burgh's medal means that South Africa has already equalled its medal success of the last games in Beijing four years ago where they won just one medal, which was Khotso Mokoena's silver in the long jump."

Sapa

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