JOHANNESBURG - It was a relatively disappointing day on the water for South Africa’s rowers at the world championships in Sarasota, in the US, on Tuesday, with two boats missing out on A finals.
The men’s four boat, that was regarded as a possible medal hope, narrowly missed out on a spot in the semi-finals. They will instead be racing in the C final, after finishing fourth in their repechage
With Olympic and world championship gold medallist John Smith and Olympic silver medallist Lawrence Brittain occupying two seats in the boat, the crew certainly had the potential to at least make it into the A final.
Jake Green and David Hunt, who was part of the crew that just missed out on winning the bronze medal at last year’s Rio Games, completed the quartet.
They made a promising start in Tuesday's race where they held onto second place, going through the first half of the race.
The dropped down to fourth over the next 500 metres where they were involved in a tussle with the French crew for the crucial third spot.
The South African boat left everything on the water as they crossed the line a spent force, a second behind France.
Two months ago the quartet finished fourth in Lucerne where they missed out on bronze by 0.05 seconds.
The lightweight double sculls crew of Vaughn Botes and Nicholas Oberholzer, who finished fourth and fifth at the last two Under-23 world championships, had a far better day on the water.
They finished second in their repechage to advance to the semi-finals in the A final.
They worked their way up from fourth to third before finishing second behind the British crew.
The men’s pair of Sandro Torrente and Leo Davis will also have to be content with a spot in the C final.
The duo went through the first 500 metres lying third, but dropped down to fifth.
On Monday, Kyle Schoonbee safely navigated his way into the men’s single sculls quarter-finals after finishing second in his repechage.
With 500 metres to go, Schoonbee took his foot off the gas to allow Japan’s Ryuta Arakawa to win.