Cape Town - South African swimming superstar Chad le Clos has confirmed that both his parents are battling cancer.
Le Clos, the 2012 gold medal winner in the 200m butterfly in London, is expected to resume his duel with American legend Michael Phelps in both the 100m and 200m butterfly in Rio next month.
Le Clos' preparations have unfortunately been affected by the news that his mother, Geraldine, has had her breast cancer return, while his father, Bert, has developed prostate cancer.
Geraldine has undergone a double mastectomy, while Bert has lost 30kg in weight in the past six months.
In a statement issued on Monday, Le Clos wrote:
The Rio Olympics are just a few weeks away but I can confirm that both my parents are fighting cancer.
My Mum Geraldine has breast cancer which has returned since her remission in 2010. She has recently undergone a double mastectomy and is now having chemo. My Dad Bert developed prostate cancer and has also undergone an operation in late June.
It has not been an easy time but I am training hard for Rio. More than anything else I want them to win their battles. I also hope that they will be in Rio.
I would ask my friends in the media to respect their recovery. I will also not be doing any media prior to Rio.