Tue, 26 May 2020

Cape Town - Former Olympic gold medalist Ryk Neethling believes the South African swimming team will win medals at next year's Tokyo Olympics.

At the 2016 Rio Olympics, Team SA took home three silver medals.

In a blow to their medal chances, Cameron van der Burgh announced his retirement from competitive swimming in 2018.

Meanwhile, SA's most decorated swimmer, Chad le Clos, will compete in his third Olympics in 2020.

SA's newest swimming star Tatjana Schoenmaker is one of the country's strongest medal contenders in Tokyo after winning gold at this year's Commonwealth Games in the 200m breaststroke.

Neethling, who won gold at the 2004 Athens Games in the men's 4x100m freestyle relay, expressed his excitement at South Africa's female swimming prospects.

"Yes, it's very exciting, I think our female swimmers haven't really been tested on the very intense international stage but someone like Tatjana (Schoenmaker) has been doing really well," said Neethling at the charity event at Val de vie Estate this past weekend.

"Obviously Chad (le Clos) is the old experienced guy now, it's hard to believe that he has come so far from those days in 2012, but I definitely think we'll leave Tokyo with a couple of medals."

The 2020 Tokyo Olympics is scheduled to take place from July 24 to August 9.

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