The FINA Swimming World Cup Singapore 2018 presented by Yakult kicked off on the morning of 15th November with a series of qualifying heats before the finals in the evening.
The finals started dramatically with the Women’s 400m Freestyle after a miscount of laps at the 350m mark saw Femke Heemskerk drop three places to eventually finish fourth. In the Women’s 100m Individual Medley, World Record holder Katinka Hosszu (HUN) narrowly lost out to Sarah Sjoestroem (SWE) by just 0.07 seconds, but maintained her iron dominance in the Women’s 200m Butterfly – an event she has won throughout the FINA Swimming World Cup 2018. However, Sjoestroem maintains her advantage on the leader board with another gold this evening from the exciting Women’s 50m Freestyle.
Sharing on her performance today, Sjoestroem said: “I was hoping to do some good races and I was able to swim fast today. I’m very happy with my two golds; I’ve won a lot of silvers in the last few stops so these wins show that I’m improving and that I clocked good timings too.”
Also top of the table, Sarah Sjoestroem (SWE) will be taking the opportunity to extend her lead after qualifying for the Women’s 100m Individual Medley and 50m Freestyle finals tonight. Sjoestroem is will be closely chased by crowd favourite Katinka Hosszu (HUN) as they come head to head in the 100m Indiivudual Medley. They are joined by stiff competition from Emily Seebohm (AUS), Siobhan O’Connor (GBR) and Alia Atkinson (JAM). Hosszu has also qualified for the 200m Butterfly with China’s Zhang Yufei.
Shares Hosszu: “I’m happy with my performance so far but I don’t like to think too much of it; the finals are in the evening so that is what matters. The morning swims are about getting the lanes for the night.”
On the local front, Singapore’s Olympian Joseph Schooling made his FINA Swimming World Cup debut by qualifying for the Men’s 100m Butterfly. Commenting on his debut, Schooling said, “This meet is really competitive, but at the same time, it’s more of a stress-free environment. Everyone wants to win but we can all be friends right after the meet. Zhu Hao and I have come to be good friends and it is always nice for me when we go head to head. It’ll be a close race tonight and I’m looking forward to it.”
Schooling eventually came in fourth place, losing out to China’s Li Zhuhao. Commenting on his win, Li remarked, “I’m really happy with my win and the timing. I’ve clocked a similar timing in Singapore before and it’s one of my bests, but I’m also aware that Joseph has just come back from America and is jet-lagged, so I’ve got to keep improving!”
Schooling will also compete in the Men’s 50m Butterfly and 4x50m Mixed Medley Relay on Saturday, 17 November 2018.
Day 1 of the FINA Swimming World Cup wrapped up with an all new World Record set by Russia’s Vladimir Morozov in the Men’s 50m Freestyle – ending the evening’s events on a high. This bettered his very own record, set just last weekend in Tokyo, by 0.01 second. He also took home the gold in the Men’s 100m Individual Medley, leading the pack by a good 0.45s ahead of Michael Andrew (USA) and Wang Shun (CHN).
Reflecting on his wins this evening, Morozov said, “I feel pretty good even though today was a tough day, with two main events. The 50m Freestyle was my best time in this circuit and it’s always a good race if you’re closing in on the World Record. Tomorrow is just going to be the 100m Freestyle but I have very good competition there.”
FINA Swimming World Cup takes place at the OCBC Arena from 15th to 17th November 2018. Enjoy 20% early bird discount off tickets from now till 15th October. Tickets available from SportsHubTix For more information about SSA, please visit www.swimming.org.sg