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Friday, December 06, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Bovell gets 50m freestyle silver
T&T’s George Bovell ended a streak of three bronze medals on the trot at the FINA World Cup when he swam to a silver medal in the men’s 50 metre freestyle on the second and final day of the United Arab Emirates, fourth leg of the circuit at the Hamdan Sports Complex, Dubai, yesterday. In the final, Bovell competing from lane two raced home in 21.32 seconds behind in-form Russian Vladimir Morozov (20.66) who swam from lane four while USA’s Anthony Ervin was a close third in 21.34 seconds. The other finishers in the race were South African world record holder Roland Schoeman (21.46) followed by Japan’s Shinri Shioura (21.58), Poland’s Konrad Czerniak (21.64), Japan’s Kenta Ito (21.66) and Brazilian, Felipe De Souza (21.84).
Last year, Ervin won gold in 21.18 ahead of Bovell (21.23) and Australian Kyle Richardson (21.58). In the morning heats, the 30-year-old Bovell was the fifth best swimmer after he touched the wall in 21.68 for second in the seventh and penultimate heat behind Schoeman (21.67) while De Souza (21.79) was third. Morozov, who on Thursday won the 100m freestyle in 45.84, was also the top qualifier after he won the final heat in 20.70 ahead of Ito (21.57) and Shioura (21.99) while Ervin (21.66) won heat six with Czerniak (21.82) second. On Thurday, the Michigan-based Bovell, last December’s World Short Course 100m IM bronze winner, was third in the men’s 100m individual medley final in 53.38 seconds adrift of gold medallist Australian Kenneth To (51.64) and silver medallist Morozov (51.76), who swam the quickest second half, in 28.06 seconds. Fourth home in the final was Shioura in 52.90, well ahead of Hong Kong duo Geoffrey Cheah (54.70) and Raymond Ho Lun Mak (55.62) while Hungary’s David Foldhazi (55.70) and Finland’s Sami Myren (55.84) brought up the final placings.
Earlier in the heats, Bovell, a silver medal winner in the same event last year in 52.18 behind To (51.43) and ahead of Aussie Darian Townsend (52.80), was the fourth fastest qualifier, but winner of the fifth and penultimate heat in 54.74. He was followed home by Cheah (54.80), Myren (55.71) and Ho Lun Mak (55.76), who all qualified for the final. Morozov, who won gold in the same event on home soil on Saturday in 51.61 ahead of To (51.83) and Bovell (52.88) was the top qualifier from the heats overall in 53.81 to top heat six ahead of Shioura (54.01) while To won heat four in 54.11 and was third best in the heats. The bronze for Bovell, follows his double bronze in Moscow where he touched the wall in 21.49 in the men’s 50m freestyle behind Morozov (20.59) and World Championships and World Cup record holder Schoeman (21.15). With his two medals in Dubai, Bovell, the reigning World Long Course Championship 50m freestyle bronze medal holder, carried his medal haul to 23 medals from 24 finals.
A winner of 16 medals last year (nine gold and seven silver) during the FINA/ARENA Swimming World Cup series, Bovell, a four-time Olympian, has now won seven medals from eight finals this year, (one gold, one silver and five bronze) with four more World Cup stops to go. The top T&T swimmer will have little time to rest as he heads to Doha in Qatar, for the fifth leg tomorrow and Monday where he got double silver last year in the 100m IM (51.87) and 50m freestyle (21.06), both former national records. The other World Cup stops include Singapore (November 5-6), Tokyo, Japan (November 9-10) and Beijing, China, (November 13-14).
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