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World Aquatics: 3 world records fall as Australia win four golds

World Aquatics 3 world records fall as Australia win four golds
Photo Credit : IANS

Fukuoka (Japan): Three world records, including the oldest one, fell and four out of five gold medals went to Australia in the first day’s swimming competition at the World Aquatics Championships here on Sunday.

Frenchman Leon Marchand broke Michael Phelps’ 15-year-world record in men’s 400 metres individual medley when he retained his world title in four minutes 2.50 seconds, trimming 1.34 seconds off the previous mark of 4:03.84, reports Xinhua.

Phelps’ time, the oldest long-course swimming record, was set at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games when he collected a total of eight gold medals.

“That was insane,” the 21-year-old Marchand said after the race. “That was one of the most painful things I did. The best is yet to come. The time is crazy.”

American Carson Foster finished second in 4:06.56 and Japan’s Daiya Seto took bronze in 4:09.41.

Australia became the biggest winner on the night by winning all the other four finals.

Double Olympic gold medallist Arianne Titmus claimed the women’s 400 metres freestyle title with a new world record of three minutes 55.38 seconds, breaking the previous world mark of 3:56.08 set by Canada’s Summer McIntosh in March this year.

American Katie Ledecky, who won three gold medals at the 2016 Rio Olympics and five golds in last year’s Budapest World Championships, finished second in 3:58.73. The bronze was won by Erika Fairweather of New Zealand in 3:59.59. McIntosh finished fourth in 3:59.94 and China’s Li Bingjie fifth in 4:01.65.

The third world record was set in the women’s 4×100 metres relay by Australia.

Double freestyle Olympic champion Emma McKeon anchored them to the gold medal in 3:27.96, breaking the previous mark of 3:29.69 set by themselves at the Tokyo Olympics on July 25, 2021. The United States took silver in 3:31.93 and China finished third in 3:32.40.

In the men’s 400m freestyle, Australia’s Samuel Short won. Reigning Olympic champion Ahed Hafnaoui of Tunisia narrowly missed the top spot by 0.02 seconds and Germany’s Lukas Martens took bronze.

The Australians also secured gold in the men’s 4x100m freestyle relay, followed by Italy and the United States.

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