Skinner pushes Namibia’s medal tally up to 7

Xander Skinner won his second medal at the Africa Games on 13 March 2024. File photo

Xander Skinner won his second and Namibia’s seventh medal at the Africa Games in Ghana on Wednesday when he claimed bronze in the men’s 50m freestyle final.

Ali Khalafalla of Egypt won gold in 22,02, with South Africa’s Jimmie Clayton taking the silver medal in 22,54 and Skinner the bronze medal in 22,67. 

Skinner’s time was a new Namibian record as he narrowly beat his former mark of 22,69 seconds that he established at Ford Lauderdale in the United States in March last year. 

It was also his second medal at the games after he won a silver medal in the men’s 100m freestyle on 9 March. On that occasion Clayton won the gold medal, while Skinner came second in a time of 46,29, which also broke his previous national record of 49,84 seconds that he established in Arizona last year. 

He said it was a great feeling when interviewed after Wednesday’s race. 

“It’s a surreal experience racing against some of the top swimmers in the world like Ali and Jimmie – it’s an honour racing against them and such a good feeling,” he said. 

“Now I will go back to the United States, to Arizona, for another training block and to finish up my studies. I’ve got a couple of competitions there and then hopefully I can qualify for the Olympics in Paris,” he added.

Skinner’s bronze medal pushed Namibia’s medal tally up to seven (one gold, three silver and three bronze) to put them 12th overall on the medal table. 

Egypt is still way out in front with 115 medals (65 gold, 27 silver, 23 bronze), followed by South Africa on 77 (22 gold, 22 silver, 33 bronze) and Nigeria on 51 (22 gold, 13 silver, 20 bronze). 

Ronan Wantenaar, meanwhile, missed out on a third medal by the narrowest of margins when he came fourth in the men’s 200m individual medley in 2:05,33, with Moncef Balamane of Algeria finishing one hundredth of a second ahead of him to take the bronze medal. Jaouad Syoud of Algeria won the gold medal in 2:01,44, while Andrew Ross of South Africa won silver in 2:03,26. Namibia’s Oliver Durand also qualified for the final, where he finished seventh in 2:09,58. 

In the women’s 200m individual medley Mollina Smalley finished sixth in 2:28,71, with Cecile Georgia of South Africa winning gold in 2:17,65, Nour Elgendy of Egypt silver in 2:19,74, and Hamida Nefsi of Algeria bronze in 2:20,51. 

Reza Westerduin finished fifth in the women’s 800m freestyle final in 9:52,02, with Catherine van Rensburg of South Africa taking gold in 8:50,78, Lojine Hamed of Egypt silver in 9:08,82 and Majda Chebaraka of Algeria bronze in 9:39,28. 

Namibia’s female team of Molly Smalley, Reza Westerduin, Jessica Humphrey and Trisha Mutumbulua finished fifth in the final of the women’s 4x100m medley relay in a time of 4:32,98. South Africa won gold in 4:11,89, with Egypt taking silver in 4:17,81 and Algeria bronze in 4:25,69. 

Stay informed with The Namibian – your source for credible journalism. Get in-depth reporting and opinions for only N$85 a month. Invest in journalism, invest in democracy –
Subscribe Now!

Latest News