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Swimmers finish World Championships in style

10 August 2015

SWIMMING: The Australian Dolphins Swim Team have produced a stirring final night – winning one gold, one silver and two bronze medals to finish the Fina World Championships in Kazan with a bang.

Bronte Campbell surprised even herself to add the 50m freestyle gold to her victory in the 100m final while the men’s 4x100m medley relay got agonisingly close to the US winning silver in the medley relay.

The girls also fought hard for their bronze in the medley relay while Ben Treffers won individual bronze in the 50m backstroke final.

Bronte Campbell and Emily Seebohm both finished with three gold and a bronze while Mitch Larkin finished with two gild and silver.

The Dolphins finished with seven gold, three silver and six bronze medals to finish second to the USA on the gold medal tally by just one gold, 12 months out from the Rio Olympics.

It was a fantastic final day in the pool with 15 out of 35 swimmers on the Dolphins winning medals just tonight (relay heat swimmers included).

In one of the most thrilling races of the week, the Australian men chased the USA all the way to the finish in the men’s 4x100m medley relay.

Freestyle anchorman Cam McEvoy took over in fourth place and gave US Olympic champion Nathan Adrian almost a full second and rode his wave down the first lap and swam the leg of his life to finish just 0.15 behind to take the silver medal.

McEvoy split the fastest time of the day – 46.60 to Adrian’s 47.41 with the US clocking 3:29.93 to Australia’s 3:30.08 with France taking the bronze in 3:30.50.

Australia’s leading male swimmer of the meet, dual backstroke world champion Mitch Larkin started off for the Dolphins in 52.41 before handing over to rookie breaststroker Jake Packard for his fastest ever relay split of 59.16 with butterflyer Jayden Hadler splitting a 51.91.

“I went back to my surf lifesaving days and surfed down the first lap and then I could see myself catching Nathan down the final lap,” said McEvoy.

“It’s actually the best I have felt in the warm up all week.”

Canberra’s Ben Treffers, swimming in his first world championship final, grabbed bronze – just one one-hundredth of a second ahead of team mate,100 and 200m dual world champion Mitch Larkin.

Treffers, 23, the Commonwealth Games champion from Glasgow mixed it up with the biggest names in the sport, clocking 24.69 with Larkin 24.70.

The gold medal went to defending champion Camille Lacourt from France in 24.23 and the silver to the USA’s Olympic 100m champion Matt Grevers (24.61).

“It would have been nice if Mitch and I could have tied for third,” said Treffers, “anything can happen in a 50 metre race and I was just happy to mix it with those guys and get my hand on the wall.”

“It wasn’t as fast as the semi-final but in finals it’s all about the places and that final touch and not about the times.

“Mitch has shown what can be done this week and I have to go back to training and work on making it to the Olympics next year in the 100m,”

It is the fourth time Australia has been on the podium in this event since it came on to the program in 2001 with triple Sydney Olympic medallist Matt Welsh winning bronze that year in Fukuoka and silver in Barcelona in 2003 and Montreal in 2005.

Triple-double title haul announces Dolphins return on road to Rio

In the 50m freestyle events, anything can happen and with a fully loaded field that included the 2012 Olympic and 2013 World Champion in this event Ranomi Kromowidjojo as well as the silver and bronze medallists from the 100m freestyle Sarah Sjostrom and Cate Campbell, it was rising star Bronte Campbell who managed to sneak past the unsuspecting leaders from lane six to steal the title in 24.12.

After being crowned the world champion in the 100m freestyle earlier in the meet, and picking up the gold in the women’s 4x100m freestyle relay on day one, Bronte has had an unbelievable week, proving her potential in the pool and stamping her name at the top of the one’s to watch list on the road to Rio.

With the win, Bronte becomes only the third swimmer in history behind Australia's own Libby Trickett in 2007 and Brtitta Steffen from Germany in 2009 to win the 50-100m freestyle double.

The Dolphins are now sitting on a triple-double title haul with MitchLarkin(100, 200 backstroke), Emily Seebohm (100, 200 backstroke) and Bronte Campbell (50, 100 freestyle) all collecting dual gold in their respective events.

Bronte’s time was a personal best in the event and she said, things just came together for her this week.

The women’s 4x100m medley relay capped off proceedings at the 2015 FINA World Championships in Kazan and with both the 100m backstroke and 100m freestyle world champions on our final team, Australia was well and truly in the mix for a medal.

Backstroke golden girl Emily Seebohm led off the team, splitting a 58.81 to give Australia the early lead.

It was then up to Taylor McKeown (1:07.38) and Emma McKeon (57.59) to stay in touch with the lead group and give Bronte Campbell a chance to get the team onto the podium and add to the ever-growing medal tally.

Bronte swiftly moved past the USA to move into bronze medal position and was hot on the heels of Sweden and China as they approached the wall. Splitting an impressive 51.78, Bronte touched for bronze with a total time of 3:55.56.

China were the eventual winners in 3:54.41 with Sweden setting a new European record for silver in 3:55.24.

Australian Medal Tally

Gold: 7

Emily Seebohm – 100m Backstroke and 200m Backstroke

Mitch Larkin – 100m Backstroke and 200m Backstroke

Bronte Campbell – 50m Freestyle and 100m Freestyle

Emily SeebohmEmma McKeonBronte CampbellCate Campbell (Heat swimmers: Madison Wilson, Bronte Barratt and Mel Wright) - Women’s 4x100m Freestyle relay

Silver: 3

Madison Wilson – 100m backstroke

Cameron McEvoy – 100m Freestyle

Mitch Larkin, Jake Packard, Jayden Hadler, Cameron McEvoy (Heat swimmers: David Morgan, Kyle Chalmers) Men’s 4x100m medley relay

Bronze: 6

Mack Horton – 800m Freestyle

Jessica Ashwood – 400m Freestyle

Cate Campbell – 100m Freestyle

Ben Treffers – 50m Backstroke

Cameron McEvoy, David McKeon, Dan Smith, Thomas Fraser-Holmes (Heat swimmers: Grant Hackett, KurtHerzog) - Men’s 4x200m Freestyle relay

Emily Seebohm, Taylor McKeown, Emma McKeon, Bronte Campbell (Heat swimmers: Madison Wilson, Lorna Tonks, Madeline Groves, Melanie Wright) - Women’s 4x100m medley relay

Total: 16

New Australian Records at the meet:
Women’s 400m freestyle: 4:03.34 – Jessica Ashwood, Women’s 1500m freestyle: 15:52.17 – Jessica Ashwood, Women’s 800m freestyle: 8:18.41, Men’s 100m backstroke: 52.37 – Mitch Larkin (Commonwealth Record) 200m backstroke: 1:53.58 - Mitch Larkin (Commonwealth Record), Women’s 200m backstroke: 2:05.81, Emily Seebohm (Commonwealth Record)

Swimming Australia

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