Blasts from the past: Fairlie fights off more fancied Muir
Today in SA sports history: February 18
1961 — The Springboks complete their tour of the UK and France unbeaten in the Tests, but they have to settle for a 0-0 draw against France in their final international in Colombes. It’s the third and last time that the Boks have played to a pointless draw.
1966 — Jeppe Girls High pupil Ann Fairlie maintains her unbeaten record over more fancied world record-holder Karen Muir, beating her and Olympic silver medallist Kiki Caron of France in the 110-yard backstroke at the Ellis Park pool in Johannesburg. Fairlie, 17, clocked 68.9sec – 0.2sec off Muir’s world mark – to beat the 13-year-old by 0.1sec. Despite a slow start and swimming into the rope after the turn, Muir came back strongly at the end. Australian swimmer Linda McGill, poolside at the time, said of the race: “Karen Muir is a better swimmer than Ann Fairlie. Karen lost the race because she swam into the ropes. She would have won the race with a clear swim.”..
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