Veteran Zandberg returns to competitive swimming after losing a bet

12 August 2018 - 12:18 By David Isaacson
Gerhard Zandberg during day 4 of the 2015 South African National Aquatic Championships at Kings Park Swimming Pool on April 16, 2015 in Durban, South Africa.
Gerhard Zandberg during day 4 of the 2015 South African National Aquatic Championships at Kings Park Swimming Pool on April 16, 2015 in Durban, South Africa.
Image: Anesh Debiky/Gallo Images

Veteran Gerhard Zandberg‚ a two-time Olympian in 2004 and 2008‚ made a return to competitive swimming at the SA short course championships in Durban — after losing a bet.

The 35-year-old had confidently predicted the time of a kid at an age-group gala‚ and then added he would make a comeback if the swimmer didn’t achieve it. The kid let him down. 

Zandberg‚ a sprint specialist‚ fell short of the qualifying times for the world championships in China in December‚ but he still picked up two medals‚ 100m individual medley silver and 50m backstroke bronze. 

“Graham [Hill‚ the national coach] had said I should come down and give it a go for worlds‚ but I still need to lose more weight‚” said Zandberg‚ who is planning to keep training to try for the world long-course championships next year and the Olympics the year after.

Zandberg won 50m backstroke medals at four  world championships from 2003 to 2011‚ including gold in 2007.

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