2017 European Short Course Swimming Championships, Copenhagen (DEN)
Great day for Germany, Hungary, Russia and the Netherlands
A four-medal haul delighted the German, Hungarian, Dutch and Russian swimmers, while Italy collected a full set (1-1-1) on the second day at the European Short Course Swimming Championships in Copenhagen. The hosts could also celebrate their first podium-finish in the Royal Arena.
The Hungarians and the Dutch enjoyed a great spell on the second day, both teams clinched two golds, a silver and a bronze respectively. The Germans were just as good with a gold, two silvers and a bronze, while Russia had a gold, a silver and two bronzes.
For the Magyars â€“ who topped the medal table in Netanya 2015 â€“ Katinka Hosszu delivered another gold, as she retained her 100m back title with ease. Though the title-holder David Verraszto skipped the meet, the medley nation threw another ace to the table as Peter Bernek showed his skills for the first time in the 400m IM (he won the 400m free in 2015 and came second in that event yesterday). He was a class apart, touched home with a 3.6sec advantage ahead of Germanyâ€™s Philip Heintz, while the other Hungarian, Gergely Gyurta clinched bronze.
The Germans took revenge in the 800m free where Sarah Koehler won a wonderful duel against Boglarka Kapas (HUN). This was a great consolation for the nation topping the all-time ranks as Marco Koch couldnâ€™t recover fully from his sickness and could clinch silver in his favourite 200m breaststroke. The fourth German medal, a bronze, came in the 100m fly, courtesy of Marius Kusch.
Here the Italian pair of Matteo Rivolta and Pietro Codia produced the meetâ€™s first 1-2 for the same nation. It was a breathtaking race where the first three hit the wall in a span of 0.08sec, Rivolta just out-touched his compatriot by 0.03.
The Dutch had a 1-3 in the womenâ€™s 50m fly where Ranomi Kromowidjojo enjoyed a much easier race than expected after Sarah Sjostrom (SWE) â€“ in the middle of a busy schedule with 100m free and 100m IM swims â€“ bowed out in the semi-finals. Maikee de Waard got the bronze for the Netherlands then Kromowidjojo rushed to the start to the 4x50m mixed medley relay and claimed a second gold in a span of ten minutes. It was a thriller, only 0.04sec separated the winners from the bronze medallists but Kromowidjojo had the magical touch at the wall.
The first day belonged to the Russians and they didnâ€™t slow down too much. They also posted a 1-3 finish, in the 200m breast where Kirill Prigoda came first and Mikhail Dorinov third. Maria Kameneva added a bronze in the 100m back, while Aleksandr Krasnykh seemed a bit disappointed after his silver medal finish in the 200m free. However, the 400m champion couldnâ€™t do much to prevent Danas Rapsysâ€™s triumph. The Lithuanian, bronze medallist in the 200m back, sailed away early and built a 1.37sec gap by the end of the race.
The 50m fly final caused some noise in the stands since Emilie Beckman delivered the first medal to the hosts, a silver, much to the joy of the crowd.
Tickets for the ten sessions are available at: http://www.ticketmaster.dk/
Press release from LEN, photos courtesy of Deepbluemedia / Giorgio Scala