Chad le Clos avoids major upset, sneaks into 200m butterfly SFs in Tokyo | Sport

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South African swimmer Chad le Clos

South African swimming ace Chad le Clos has launched his Olympic Games campaign, surviving a massive scare to qualify for the semi-finals of the 200m butterfly.

Le Clos was very nearly eliminated from the event he won at London 2012, finishing his heat in 5th place at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre on Monday in a time of 1:55.96.

That was enough to see him qualify 16th fastest for Tuesday’s semi-finals – only the top 16 from the heats qualify – which will take place at 04:35 (SA time) on Tuesday.  

South African Ethan du Preez also swam in Le Clos’ heat, but finished in 8th place in a time of 1:58.50 and will not feature in the semis.

Hungarian world record holder Kristof Milak is the overwhelming favourite to win gold and won the heat in a time of 1:53.58.

Rebecca Meder, meanwhile, who is South Africa’s other participation in the pool on Monday, finished 7th in her heat in the women’s 200m individual medley. 

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