Wednesday 21 March 2018

Swimming: Starlet Bryson takes golden opportunity

Cooney: impressed in 50m backstroke
Cooney: impressed in 50m backstroke

Mark O'Driscoll

TEENAGER Niamh Bryson claimed gold after an exciting women's 50m breaststroke final on the opening night of the National Short Course Championships at Leisureland, Galway.

The 14-year-old caused an upset when she held off Jillian Coll -- Bryson taking the title by seven hundredths of a second in 35.08.

With many of the country's top swimmers still in heavy training, this year's championships have opened the door for new prospects to emerge and Templeogue girl Bryson took her opportunity with both hands.

Beijing Olympian Aisling Cooney impressed with a solid performance in the 50m backstroke, winning in 28.49 ahead of Aer Lingus team-mates Amy McVeigh and Niamh McDonnell.

It was just the kind of display that the Dubliner would have wanted as she looks ahead to the European Short Course Championships in Eindhoven next week, as she was just a couple of tenths outside her Irish record.

In the men's 50m backstroke, an exciting battle saw William Ensor get the touch in 27.40, just eight hundredths ahead of Colm Dowling.

Dowling then picked up bronze in the 50m breast, finishing behind gold medallist Dan Sweeney (30.78) and Colm Fitzgerald (31.25).

There was no drama in the women's 800m freestyle as Niamh O'Sullivan eased to the title in 8:52.13, well ahead of Grace Sweeney (9:06.64) and Therese Corry (9:09.61). Conor Turner (16) won the 1,500m free in 15:47.78.

Irish Independent

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