By Sharon Robb
July 29, 2014—The sixth and final day of swimming at the Commonwealth Games was just as exciting as the first five days at Tollcross Swimming Centre in Glasgow, Scotland.
In one of the most competitive meets, Australia dominated the men’s and women’s events and is brimming with confidence for the August 21-24 Pan Pacific Championships at the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre in Southport, Australia.
Of course, the Aussies will have stiffer competition in the United States and Japan. Canada is the fourth team in the four-nation meet.
Australia finished with 57 medals including 19 gold, 21 silver and 17 bronze.
England was a distant second with 28 medals (10 gold, 10 silver, 8 bronze).
South Africa had 12 medals (3 golds, 3 silver and 6 bronze). Canada finished with 11 medals (4 gold, 1 silver, 6 bronze) and host Scotland had 10 medals (3 gold, 3 silver, 4 bronze).
Australia immediately left the country after the meet and will missing the Closing Ceremony. Swimmers were under an alcohol ban and curfew that prevented them from leaving the Athletes’ Village after their embarrassing showing at the 2012 London Olympics.
In Tuesday’s championship finals:
Women’s 400-meter freestyle: New Zealand’s Lauren Boyle pulled ahead at the 250-meter mark to win her first Games gold medal in a meet record 4:04.47, fourth fastest time in the world this year. Jazz Carlin of Wales took the silver in 4:05.16 and Aussie Bronte Barratt took bronze in 4:06.02.
Men’s 50-meter freestyle: British teenager Ben Proud won the splash-and-dash gold medal to join his 50 butterfly gold medal. Proud just missed a meet record in 21.92. Aussie Cameron McEvoy was second in 22.00 and Aussie James Magnussen was third in 22.10. Trinidad and Tobago’s and Bolles alum George Bovell was fifth in 22.31.
Women’s 50-meter backstroke: Wales Georgia Davies won gold in national record 27.56, second fastest time in the world this year. Brit Lauren Quigley took silver in 27.69 and Canadian Brooklynn Snodgras, a junior at Indiana University, took the bronze in a national record 27.97.
Men’s 200-meter individual medley: Aussie Daniel Tranter came from behind to knock off Chad le Clos of South Africa and University of Florida’s Dan Wallace of Scotland in a meet record 1:57.83. Le Clos was leading after the butterfly and backstroke but lost the lead on the breaststroke leg. Wallace, who was dressed in a kilt during his walk to the blocks, was second in a national record 1:58.72. Le Clos hung on for the bronze in 1:58.85.
Men’s 1500-meter freestyle: Canadian Ryan Cochrane won his second gold medal at the Games. The 25-year-old, competing in his final Games, won in 14:44.03, fastest time in the world this year. He won the gold in 2010 in 15:01.49. Aussie Mack Horton took silver in a best time 14:48.76. Daniel Jervis of Wales was third in 14:55.33.
Women’s 4×100-meter medley relay: The Aussie women swept the relays, winning the final one in a meet record 3:56.23 after a scorching 51.59 split by Cate Campbell. Meet officials said it was believed to be the fastest relay split in history in a textile suit. England was second in 3:57.03 and Canada was third.
Men’s 4×100-meter medley relay: With Adam Peaty swimming anchor, England knocked off Australia to win the gold in a meet record 3:31.51. The Aussies finished in 3:31.21. South Africa took third in 3:34.47.
Cate Campbell said she is going to ban herself from social media at future meets because she was overwhelmed by the fan support. “I was just feeling the pressure a little bit,” Campbell said. “I think I have learned a valuable lesson about social media. Even support can turn into a burden sometimes.”
Sharon Robb can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org