The 24-year-old delivered Team SA’s first medal at the Tokyo Olympics.
won the silver medal in the 100m breaststroke final on Tuesday. The 24-year-old became the first South African woman to win an Olympic swimming medal in 21 years. Schoenmaker managed to touch the wall in 1min 05.22sec and finished behind
, who clinched the gold medal with a record of 1:04.95.
In a post-race interview, Schoenmaker criticized the scheduling of the games.
“We knew it was going t be a tough race and it’s obviously harder doing it in the morning, waking up and being on fire, especially in 100 meters,”
the 24-year-old said after winning the first medal for Team South Africa at the Tokyo Olympic Games.
“But it’s the same for everyone. I’m not here to complain. I hope I give my country a bit of hope, we’re going through a tough time
Schoenmaker was looking to participate in the 100m-200m breaststroke double. However, failing to get a gold medal on Tuesday will prevent her from repeating the historic success of Penny Heyns at the Atlanta Olympics. The legendary swimmer won the Olympic gold medal for South Africa in the 100m-200m breaststroke double in 1996.
Schoenmaker will race for gold in the 200m breaststroke heats on Wednesday.