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Last Updated: Saturday, 14 May, 2005, 16:04 GMT 17:04 UK
Super Du Toit shines at World Cup
By Mike Burnett
BBC Sport in Manchester

Natalie Du Toit
South African star Natalie du Toit shone in the pool while GB swimmers also enjoyed medal success at the Visa Paralympic World Cup.

Du Toit smashed four world records as she claimed three victories, including a coveted win in the S9 100m backstroke - the gold medal she missed in Athens.

Natalie Jones and Nyree Lewis led the GB women's charge with wins in the 200m individual medley and 100m backstroke.

Sascha Kindred, Jim Anderson and James Crisp topped the podium for the men.

A lively crowd gathered in the Aquatics Centre on Saturday to cheer on the 12 British competitors, who had made it through the morning's heats.

I'm not a backstroke specialist
Natalie Du Toit

But all eyes were on du Toit as she dazzled from start to finish in the pool.

Having broken two world records in the heats, she then opened her medal account with a third, clocking 1:01.68 minutes in the MD 100m freestyle.

Du Toit then claimed the victory she most desired, edging Athens gold medallist Stephanie Dixon of Canada in dramatic style to win the S9 100m backstroke - the title she missed at last year's Paralympics.

Her hat-trick was completed in the MD 50m freestyle, setting another new time of 29.37 seconds.

Du Toit admitted she was surprised by her three victories and four world records.

"I'm not a backstroke specialist so to beat Stephanie Dixon, who is, in the 100m race was a real shock," said the South African.

Britain's first swimming gold went to four-time Paralympic medallist Anderson, who held off his fellow medal-winners from Athens to clinch the S2 50m backstroke.

But a one-two-three finish from Jones, Lewis and Liz Johnson in the 200m individual medley stole the show.

I really didn't expect to come away from here with a world record
Natalie Jones

Jones knocked over a second off the world record, coming home in 3:17.39, as she and fellow local favourite Lewis repeated their medal positions from Athens.

Jones was on top of the world after claiming a new mark.

"I really didn't expect to come away from here with a world record," said the Chelsea fan, who is based in Manchester.

But Jones had to settle for bronze in the S6 100m backstroke as Lewis soared to victory.

Kindred also carried on his form from Athens with a win in the SB7 100m breastroke and Crisp triumphed in the MD 50m freestyle.

British results and selected others (GB unless stated):

Natalie du Toit (SA) - MD 100m freestyle
Natalie du Toit (SA) - S9 100m backstroke
Natalie du Toit (SA) - MD 50m freestyle
Jim Anderson - S2 50m backstroke
Natalie Jones - SM6 200m individual medley
Sascha Kindred - SB7 100m breaststroke
Nyree Lewis - S6 100m backstroke
James Crisp - S9 100m backstroke
Benoit Huot (CAN) - MD 100m freestyle
Rong Tian (CHN) - S7 50m buutterfly

Nyree Lewis - SM6 200m individual medley

Robert Welbourn - MD 100m freestyle
James Crisp - SM9 200m individual medley
Liz Johnson - SM6 200m individual medley
Natalie Jones - S6 100m backstroke

Interview: South Africa star Natalie du Toit

Interviews: British swimmers Nathalie Jones, Nyree Lweis & Elizabeth Johnson

Interview: British swimmer Sascha Kindred

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