Wesley Botton
Chief sports writer
1 minute read
29 May 2014
8:00 am

Zandberg’s battle is over

Wesley Botton

Gerhard Zandberg's legal representative, Karen van Eck, said yesterday they were relieved his nine-month battle with Swimming South Africa (SSA) had come to an end.

FILE PICTURE: Gerhard Zandberg during a training session in Daegu, South Korea. FILE PIC. Photo by Wessel Oosthuizen / Gallo Images

“We were prepared for a harder fight but we’re glad it’s over,” Van Eck said after the case was closed at the high court in Pretoria.

“The whole matter has been settled by order of the court. The judgment and all sanctions have been withdrawn and SSA will contribute to his legal costs.”

Zandberg, above, who won the 50m backstroke world title in 2007, was banned and fined after sharing a room with his girlfriend, allegedly without permission from team management, at last year’s World Swimming Championships in Barcelona.

According to reports, Zandberg’s room-mate, Cameron van der Burgh, was ill and he had made the move to get some sleep.

He went on to crash out in the semifinals of his specialist event shortly after his disciplinary hearing and missed out on a fourth successive medal.

Zandberg’s ban was suspended after his appeal hearing in October, but the 31-year-old swimmer approached the high court in December in a bid to clear his name.

Shaun Adriaanse, chief executive of SSA, could not comment yesterday but the swimming federation confirmed last week it had opted to end the legal battle and withdraw its findings and sanctions.