Unlike many promising local swimmers who move to the States to continue their training, van den Burgh trains with Dirk Lange and is based in Pretoria.
He represented South Africa at the 2008 Summer Olympics and nhow at the 2012 Summer Olympics where he won the gold medal at the 100 meter breaststroke in a new world record.
Van den Burgh has won numerous World Championship medals since his debut in 2007 when he took a bronze medal. He is studying for Bachelor of Commerce and a Bachelor of Laws at the University of Pretoria.
So Team SA's first 2012 Olympic medal can truly be celebrated as a 100% proudly South African moment!
After winning the race, van der Burgh lay on his back, looked skyward and pointed, a tribute to Norwegian swimmer Alexander Dale Oen, who died of a heart attack this year at 26. Dale Oen had held the world record and would have been the favorite heading into London.
"I dedicate this race to Alexander," van der Burgh said after winning. "He was a role model for me when it comes to hard training."
(Image source: postnoon.com)
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