Published: Jan 19, 2013 01:06:45 AM Updated: Jun 4, 2013 09:29:30 AM
Chinese dynamo Ye Shiwen and two of the heavyweights of Australian swimming – James Magnussen and Christian Sprenger – were the stars of the first night of the $500,000 BHP Billiton Aquatic Super Series at Challenge Stadium in Perth.
Joining that trio in setting the enthusiastic local crowd into a frenzy was Australian sprinter Cate Campbell who powered to a stunning 100 metre freestyle victory over teammate Melanie Schlanger and London Olympic bronze medallist Tang Yi.
Sprenger’s 59.75 in the 100m breaststroke (942 FINA points) was the highest scoring event of the day on the FINA Pointscore, putting the Olympic silver medallist in the box seat for the $15000 that will be awarded to the top male and female swimmer of the meet.
Magnussen’s 48.38 in the men’s 100m freestyle earned him 911 FINA points – second highest amongst the men on the night
Twenty-year-old Campbell’s 53.51, a time that would have been equal sixth in the world in 2012, scored 921 points to lead the women’s pointscore – just one more point than Ye’s effort in the 200m individual medley and three better than Australian Meagen Nay’s 200m backstroke performance.
Campbell, who swam the second leg in Australia’s triumphant London Olympic Games 4x100m freestyle relay team before she was struck down with a virus that forced her out of the individual 100m, said she didn’t think she would swim so well.
“That was a really big surprise, I didn’t feel that good in warm-up,” Campbell said.
“Getting sick in London has really motivated me to get back in the water and I only had two weeks off (after the Olympics). Maybe I’m crazy.”
In London, Tang held off a typical storming finish from Schlanger to grab the bronze medal by a mere 0.03 seconds.
Campbell clocked 53.51 to Schlanger’s 54.91 and Tang’s 55.22.
At the end of night one, the EnergyAustralia Swim Team leads the competition’s point score by 24 points, 175 to China’s 151, with South Africa third on 74.
London Olympic silver medallist and 2012’s fastest man over this distance, Magnussen, has blasted to victory with a typical strong last 50m in the men;s 100m freestyle to hit the wall in 48.38, well ahead of fellow teammate James Roberts (49.62) and China’s Lu Zhiwu (50.16).
The 21-year-old, known as ‘the Missile’ was pleased with his effort.
“I’m swimming good, you know, but it was always going to be a little bit difficult outdoors,” Magnussen said.
“There’s a bit of a breeze tonight (but) I’m pretty happy with it all in all. I think it was a good swim.”
It was a solid first swim of 2013 for Magnussen as he takes aim at defending his world championship title in swimming’s blue ribband event and the big sprinter fired a warning shot at his global rivals by saying he was on track for a big year.
“Right now I think I’m ahead of where I was at this time last year. I’d be happy if it was (the slowest I swim all year).
“I’ve done a lot of hard work in this off-season and I’m really confident with my back end again and I know that if I work on that then I’m going to give myself the best chance of winning.”
In other events…
Men’s 100m breaststroke
With South Africa’s world record holder and Olympic gold medallist absent due to injury, Australian silver medallist from London, Christian Sprenger, proved his own class to dominate the field.
Sprenger hit the wall in 59.75, too strong for experienced teammate Brenton Rickard (1:01.83) and China’s Li Xiayan (1:02.68).
Women’s 50m backstroke
China’s Yuanhui Fu caused a boilover when she clocked 27.86 to upset teammate and current world record holder Zhao Jing (27.93) and Australia’s Emily Seebohm in the women’s 50m backstroke.
Seebohm, a former world record holder for the event, posted a 28.37, while fellow Aussie Belinda Hocking was fourth in 29.13.
Men’s 50m backstroke
Daniel Arnamnart, semi-finalist in the 100m backstroke at the London Olympics, crushed the field to win in a slick 25.06 from China’s Cheng Feiyi in 25.58 and South African Charl Crous (25.66).
Fresh off the back of the World Short Course Championships Ashley Delaney finished fourth in 25.98.
Women’s 100m breaststroke
Swimming in the post-Leisel Jones era for the first time, Australian veteran Sarah Katsoulis clocked an impressive 1:07.33 – almost half a second faster than her 2012 best – to beat London Olympic semi-finalists Leiston Pickett (1:08.37) and Zhao Jin (1:10.32).
Katsoulis finished fourth in the same event at the recent FINA World Short Course Championships in Istanbul.
Women’s 200m butterfly
China’s Jiao Liuyang (2012) and Liu Zige (2008) have won the last two Olympic gold medals in this event and they showed why with a one-two finish.
Lui (2:08.77) led through the first 195 metres but could not hold off the charge of Jiao (2:08.54), with Australia’s dual Olympian Samantha Hamill third in 2:10.73.
Fellow Aussie Brittany Elmslie, who was swimming the event for the first time, touched in fifth with a time of 2:16.29.
Men’s 200m butterfly
South Africa’s Michael Phelps slayer Chad le Clos was missing with a shoulder injury and China took advantage, scoring their second one-two finish in a row.
Chen Yin won comfortably in 1:57.84 from Weijia Liu in 1:59.17 and Australians Chris Wright (1:57.21) and Jayden Hadler (2:00.61).
Women’s 400m freestyle
Bronze medallist from the 200m freestyle at the London Olympic Games Bronte Barratt, showed she is in good early season form to win by almost three seconds in 4:07.75 from China’s Li Xuan Xu (4:10.51) and Yiwen Shao (4:12.21).
Australia’s other competitor Kylie Palmer was fourth in 4:14.45.
Men’s 400m freestyle
David McKeon continued his good start to this summer season by taking out the men’s 400m freestyle in 3:49.43. McKeon cruised through the first 200m in 1:52.29 before closing the last half in 1:57.14.
The 20-yar-old Australian, who made his Olympic debut in London, was too good for Australia’s Olympic finalist Ryan Napoleon (3:50.23) and China’s Yun Hao (3:50.37), who was fourth in the event in London.
Women’s 200m individual medley
The rematch between London Olympics Games gold and silver medallists Ye Shiwen and Australian golden girl Alicia Coutts proved to be a bit of a mismatch with Ye showing an improved backstroke and a typical strong freestyle to stop the clock in 2:09.67 – more than two seconds ahead of Coutts’ 2:11.92.
Australia’s Emily Seebohm was third in 2:13.60.
Men’s 200m individual medley
Teenagers Wang Shun (China) and Jayden Hadler (Australia) staged a battle through to 175m before 18-year-old Wang pulled away to win in 2:00.08 from 19-year-old Hadler’s 2:00.83.
It was a courageous swim from Hadler who had swum the 200m butterfly – an event he rarely swims – just 40 minutes before this race.
Australia’s Olympic semi finalist Daniel Tranter was third in 2:03.69.
Women’s 200m backstroke
Australia’s Beijing and London Olympic finalists Meagan Nay and Belinda Hocking have grabbed the quinella in 2:08.39 and 2:10.75 respectively.
Hocking, swimming against international competition for the first time since moving to Melbourne to train under Rohan Taylor, was no match for Nay over the last 100m. Bai Anqi of China was third in 2:13.14.
Men’s 200m backstroke
China scored a one-two finish with Xu Jiayu (2:00.07) winning a thriller by a hair from Cheng Feiyi (2:00.25).
Australia’s Olympic finalist Mitch Larkin was third in 2:01.04, with fellow Aussie Ash Delaney (2:01.19) just behind in fourth.
Women’s 50m butterfly
Lu Ying of China clocked a slick 26.20, half a body length ahead of Australia’s five-time London Olympic medallist Alicia Coutts in 26.65.
South African Olympian Trudi Maree was third in 27.06 and Australia’s London Olympic relay gold medal winning heat swimmer Yolane Kukla sixth in 27.69.
Men’s 50m butterfly
Triple Olympic relay medallist Matt Targett was a class above his rivals to blast to the wall in 23.57 in the men’s 50m butterfly.
The sprinter was more than half a second ahead of South African Garth Tune (24.09) and fellow Australian Chris Wright (24.26).
Women’s 4 x 200m freestyle relay
The Australian team of Bronte Barratt (1:59.62), Melanie Schlanger (1:59.46), Kylie Palmer (1:59.67) and Brittany Elmslie (1:58.75) led almost from start to finish, combining to clock 7:57.50 in the women’s 4x200m freestyle relay.
China was never too far behind and finished on 7:59.03, while South Africa posted an 8:23.63.
Men’s 4 x 200m freestyle relay
Australia totally outgunned their rivals to collectively pull together a 7:16.41 to cruise to victory ahead of China (7:23.99) and South Africa (7:33.10).
The Australian splits were: Thomas Fraser-Holmes (1:47.23), Kenrick Monk (1:50.94), David McKeon (1:48.67) and Ryan Napoleon (1:49.57).
Mixed 8 x 50m medley relay
After powerful breaststroke and butterfly legs respectively by veterans Brenton Rickard and Matt Targett, Australia (3:28.85) pulled away to win comfortably from China (3:30.45) and South Africa (3:35.69).
The BHP Billiton Aquatic Super Series resumes tomorrow afternoon with water polo and the Aussie Sharks men’s team taking on the might of 2012 Olympic champions Croatia at 3.30pm (Perth time), before swimming action gets underway at 5.30pm.
The swimming will be broadcast live on ONE HD at 8:30pm AEDST.
© 2010 Swimming Australia Site by IMG STG