Thursday 20 June 2019

Ryan targets backstroke medal after record-breaking semi-final

Shane Ryan. Photo: Sportsfile
Shane Ryan. Photo: Sportsfile

Shane Ryan will have high hopes of producing a good performance in the final of the 50m backstroke at the World Short Course Swimming Championships in China today after another record-breaking effort yesterday.

The 24-year-old, who is the current World University Games champion and European bronze medallist in the long course version of the event, had progressed to the semi-finals in an Irish record of 23.03 seconds, for second overall.

And he surpassed that effort as he clocked 22.96 to finish third in the first semi-final and advance to the final with the fourth-best time overall.

Ryan said: "I'm very happy. I executed a couple of good things, I definitely got the first 25 down. I can clean up the turn and then just come home a bit quicker. I definitely have more in the tank, I have a lane, I have an opportunity, I'll just go swim and enjoy it."

Russia's Evgeny Rylov was the fastest qualifier in 22.68 ahead of USA's Ryan Murphy (22.87) and China's Jiayu Xu (22.91).

Darragh Greene set a fifth Irish record in three days in the heats of the 200m breaststroke.

The National Centre Dublin swimmer took over three seconds off his previous best of 2:11.02 to win his heat in 2:07.60. That time bettered Andrew Bree's 2007 Irish record of 2:07.95.

Greene commented: "I'm delighted. My main focus was just to work on my skills and get a personal best in a morning swim. To achieve an Irish record at my first World Championships is a bonus."

Niamh Coyne will compete in the heats of the 100m breaststroke this morning before Ryan bids for glory at 12.30 Irish time.

Irish Independent

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