By Sharon Robb
August 7, 2015—Singapore’s Joseph Schooling broke his national record twice in the 100-meter butterfly on Day Six at the XVI FINA World Aquatic Championships Friday at Kazan Arena in Russia.
The Bolles alum posted the fifth fastest time in morning prelims in 51.65 and came back to lower it again in 51.40 to finish seventh and qualify for Saturday’s championship final. His splits were 23.83 and 27.57 in semis.
His previous national record was 51.69 he set at last year’s Commonwealth Games.
It was the first time in his international career that Schooling had advanced into the semifinals and finals in the 100-meter butterfly at either the World Championships or Olympic Games.
It will be Schooling’s final opportunity at a medal against some stiff competition including Hungary’s Laszlo Cseh, the 200-meter butterfly gold medalist and 50-meter butterfly bronze medalist, and American Tom Shields.
Another Bolles alum, Ryan Murphy of Team USA was fifth in the 200-meter backstroke in 1:55.00, lowering his 2015 best of 1:55.10 that he set earlier in the meet. He was the top American finisher. Teammate Tyler Clary was seventh in 1:56.26. It is the first time in the last eight meets that an American has not won the men’s 200-meter backstroke.
Ryan Lochte of Daytona Beach won his second medal of the world championships when Team USA got knocked off by Great Britain in the 4×200-meter freestyle relay. Lochte gave the U.S. the lead with a 1:45.71 split. He was joined by Florida alum Conor Dwyer, Reed Malone and Michael Weiss on the relay.
Great Britain was led by Dan Wallace of Gator Swim Club, Robert Renwick, Calum Jarvis and James Guy whose blistering 1:44.74 anchor split gave the Brits the gold in 7:04.33 in a huge upset. The U.S. had won the event since 2005. Michael Phelps, who is competing at this week’s senior nationals, was a member of the last five winning U.S. relays.
Belarus’ Pavel Sankovich of Florida State was 16th in
the 100-meter butterfly heats in 52.29, the last swimmer to advance into the semifinals, but finished 16th in the semifinals in 52.63. Suriname’s Zuhayr Pigot was 42nd in 54.20. Kuwait’s Abbas Qali was 44th in 54.35. Dylan Carter of Trinidad & Tobago scratched from the event.
American Nathan Adrian, after a disappointing seventh in the 100 freestyle broke the American record in the 50-meter freestyle semifinals in 21.37, previously owned by Cullen Jones in 21.40 since 2009. Brazilian Cesar Cielo withdrew from the men’s field with a shoulder injury.
American Anthony Ervin lost a swim-off with Russian Vlad Morozov, 21.90-21.98 to earn the eighth seed in the 50-meter freestyle final.
In Friday’s other championship finals:
Aussie Mitch Larkin won the gold medal in the 200-meter backstroke in a meet record 1:53.58 and became the first Aussie male swimmer to win the 100-200 double. Larkin also broke the eight-meet streak that American swimmers Lenny Krayzelburg, Aaron Piersol and Lochte had held.
“Amazing, I came in tonight wanting to swim faster than I did in the semi and I knew if I could do that there was a potential for medals, but to swim that much faster and win gold it’s amazing.”
Poland’s Radoslaw Kawecki took the silver in 1:54.55 and Russian Evgeny Rylov was third in 1:54.60.
Germany’s Marco Koch won the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:07.76, second-fastest time in the world this year. American Kevin Cordes was second in 2:08.05 and Hungary’s Daniel Gyurta, looking to four-peat in the event, settled for the bronze in 2:08.10.
Saturday’s men’s events are: 50-meter backstroke heats and semifinals; 1500-meter freestyle heats; mixed freestyle 4×100-meter freestyle relay; 50-meter freestyle final; and 100-meter butterfly final.
Sharon Robb can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org