Prince Albert II of Monaco, son of the late Hollywood actress, is to marry South African former Olympic swimmer and model Charlene Wittstock, the prince's office said in a statement on Wednesday.
"The prince's palace announced on Wednesday, June 23, 2010, the engagement of his Royal Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco with Mademoiselle Charlene Wittstock," the statement said. It did not give a date for the wedding.
Rainier's marriage to Kelly in 1956 brought glamour to Monaco but the Grimaldi dynasty that has ruled for more than seven centuries is familiar with tragedy and bad publicity involving Albert and his sisters Caroline and Stephanie.
Charlene Lynette Wittstock (born 25 January 1978, Bulawayo, Rhodesia) is a South African Olympic backstroke swimmer. On 23 June 2010 she and Prince Albert II of Monaco became officially engaged, after having been in a relationship since 2006.
She was a member of the women's 4×100 m medley South African team at the 2000 Summer Olympics, which finished fifth. She finished sixth at the 2002 FINA Short Course World Championships for the 200 m breaststroke.
In 2005 she swam for University of Pretoria.
On 13 April 2007 Wittstock regained her title as South Africa’s 50 m women’s backstroke champion when she completed the 50 m backstroke final at the Telkom SA National Aquatic Championships in 30:16 seconds, to finish third behind Australia’s Sophie Edington and Brazil’s Fabiola Molina.
Previously she had been out of competitive swimming for 18 months with a shoulder injury. Wittstock said she would be swimming in Europe in the near future, hoping to better her times. "I have a year left of competitive swimming, and I just want to be the best I can be in that time. After that I want to get involved in charity work, and development work with athlete's commissions."
Ana Monteiro, Special Correspondent in South Africa for Jornal de Sábado, EXCLUSIVELY for FIFA2010
Editora: Ana Maria Vieira Monteiro
Jornalista responsável: Juliana Ladeira (JP 26952 – RJ)
Comercial: Eduander Silva e Rosane Machado
Editoração Eletrônica: Júlia Almeida
Administração: Gustavo Mattos
Tel: +55 (22) 2645-0402 (Redação)
Tel: +55 (22) 7836-3944 (Comercial)
Estagiárias: Monique Amorim e Marcela Maiques