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Cameron van der Burgh OIS (born 25 May 1988) is a South African competitive swimmer.[1] He is Africa's first home-trained world record holder and individual male Olympic Champion.[2]

Cameron van der Burgh
Cameron van der Burgh.jpg
Personal information
Full name Cameron van der Burgh
National team  South Africa
Born (1988-05-25) 25 May 1988 (age 29)
Pretoria, South Africa
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)
Weight 85 kg (187 lb)
Sport Swimming
Strokes Breaststroke
Club TuksSport



Van der Burgh trains with Dirk Lange and is based in Pretoria. He has represented South Africa at the 2008 Summer Olympics, at the 2012 Summer Olympics where he won the gold medal in the 100-meter breaststroke in a new world record, and the 2016 Olympics.[3][4][5] He has won numerous World Championship medals since his debut in 2007 when he took a bronze medal. Twice he has won the FINA overall World Cup.

Van der Burgh set his first world long-course record (27.06s) in the 50 m breaststroke in the semifinals at South African nationals in April 2009, cutting 0.12 of a second from Oleg Lisogor's old world record set in 2002. He won the world title in the same year at the Rome championship, also in the 50 m breaststroke.

He won the 50m breaststroke at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in a time of 27.18 seconds in a new games record and the 100m world title at the 2010 short course world championships. He won the 100m breaststroke gold medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics in a new world record time of 58.46 seconds,[6] and paid tribute to late world champion Alexander Dale Oen afterwards.[7] Van der Burgh later admitted to breaking the rules by utilising illegal dolphin kicks during the race which was confirmed by video replays showing Van der Burgh taking three dolphin kicks.[8][9] Subsequently, FINA have suggested they may consider underwater video evidence to judge results, although van der Burgh's results and medal are not under threat.[9]

At the 2014 Commonwealth Games, he won the gold in the men's 50 m breaststroke in a new games record.[10] He won silver in the 100 m breaststroke behind Adam Peaty, and was part of the South African team that won bronze in the men's 4 x 100 m relay.[11][12]

Personal lifeEdit

Van der Burgh went to Glenstantia Primary as a young boy[13] but matriculated at Crawford College in 2006.[14] He now studies Financial Management through UNISA part-time and is interested in becoming an entrepreneur after his swimming career.[15] Since the London Olympics, van der Burgh has received various awards including South African Style Icon 2012[16], GQ 7th best-dressed man 2012,[17] and has gone on to make various magazine covers and appeared in South African TV shows. He has made many appearances around the country giving motivational speeches and attending gala dinners. He has been linked to a few charities and recently fed underprivileged kids in Alexandria with his Olympic earnings.[18]


van der Burgh has signed many lucrative endorsement deals since the London Olympics. These include Arena[19], Investec[20], Audi[21], USN,[22] and Tag Heuer,[23] with his most recent being a four-year deal with multi-brand corporation Procter & Gamble as the new Head and Shoulders ambassador, joining the likes of Michael Phelps, Lionel Messi and Jenson Button[24]. He is estimated to be earning between $200,000 and $400,000 per annum from sponsorship deals.[25]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Team SA profile – Cameron van der Burgh". Retrieved 30 July 2012. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Cameron van der Burgh Bio, Stats, and Results". Olympics at Retrieved 2017-08-08. 
  4. ^ "Rio 2016 100m breaststroke men - Olympic Swimming". International Olympic Committee. 2017-06-23. Retrieved 2017-08-08. 
  5. ^ "Rio 2016 200m breaststroke men - Olympic Swimming". International Olympic Committee. 2017-06-23. Retrieved 2017-08-08. 
  6. ^ Linden, Julian (29 July 2012). "South Africa's van der Burgh wins men's 100m breaststroke gold medal". Reuters. Retrieved 30 July 2012. 
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Swimmer admits to breaking the rules during gold-medal performance in London". Retrieved 7 August 2012. 
  9. ^ a b "Swimmer Cameron van der Burgh says he's the 'victim' in dolphin-kicking furore". 10 August 2012. Retrieved 25 August 2012. 
  10. ^ "Glasgow 2014 - Men's 50m Breaststroke Final". Retrieved 2017-08-08. 
  11. ^ "Glasgow 2014 - Men's 100m Breaststroke Final". Retrieved 2017-08-08. 
  12. ^ "Glasgow 2014 - Men's 4 x 100m Medley Relay Final". Retrieved 2017-08-08. 
  13. ^[permanent dead link]
  14. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2 July 2014. Retrieved 29 March 2013. 
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 5 October 2014. Retrieved 29 March 2013. 
  16. ^
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  18. ^
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  20. ^
  21. ^
  22. ^
  23. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 26 August 2014. Retrieved 29 March 2013. 
  24. ^
  25. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 16 February 2013. Retrieved 29 March 2013. 

External linksEdit

Preceded by
Felipe França Silva
Men's 50-metre breaststroke
world record-holder

29 July 2009 – 22 August 2014
Succeeded by
Adam Peaty
Preceded by
Oleg Lisogor
Men's 50-metre breaststroke
world record-holder (25m)

8 November 2008 – present
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Brenton Rickard
Men's 100-metre breaststroke
world record-holder (long course)

29 July 2012 – 17 April 2015
Preceded by
Ed Moses
Men's 100-metre breaststroke
world record-holder (25m)

9 November 2008 – present
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Oussama Mellouli
Swimming World Magazine's
African Swimmer of the Year

Succeeded by
Chad le Clos
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Randall Bal
Chad le Clos
FINA World Cup
overall male winner

2008, 2009
Succeeded by
Thiago Pereira
Vladimir Morozov