FINA World Championships 2019: USA's Caeleb Dressel clock's year's fastest time in 100 metres freestyle

USA's Caeleb Dressel has already won two gold medals in the 4x100m relay and the 50m butterfly and looks on course to add to his medal haul in Gwangju

Reuters July 24, 2019 11:07:42 IST
FINA World Championships 2019: USA's Caeleb Dressel clock's year's fastest time in 100 metres freestyle
  • Dressel had, two years ago, matched Michael Phelps’ record of seven world titles at a single championship

  • This year, Dressel has already pocketed gold in the 4x100m relay and the 50m butterfly in Gwangju and there will be more opportunities to add to his haul

  • Britain’s Duncan Scott returned to the pool a day after his podium snub to China’s Sun Yang prompted governing body FINA to issue him a warning

Gwangju: Caeleb Dressel showed no signs of slowing down at the world swimming championships on Wednesday after the American delivered the year’s fastest time in the 100 metres freestyle heats.

Dressel, who two years ago matched Michael Phelps’ record of seven world titles at a single championship, has already pocketed gold in the 4x100m relay and the 50m butterfly in Gwangju and there will be plenty more opportunities to add to his haul.

FINA World Championships 2019 USAs Caeleb Dressel clocks years fastest time in 100 metres freestyle

Caeleb Dressel in action at the World Swimming Championships. Reuters

"It felt good. That was kind of how we wanted to swim it: just out controlled and then come home well," said the 22-year-old, who finished in a time of 47.32 seconds. "You’ve got to get better each race so the same thing with the fly, just got to improve on different parts of the race going through the meet. It’s a long meet and I’ve got to pace it."

Russian Vladislav Grinev was second fastest, 0.60seconds behind Dressel, while Olympic champion Kyle Chalmers qualified in 10th place for the semi-finals in 48.66 seconds. Britain’s Duncan Scott returned to the pool a day after his podium snub to China’s Sun Yang prompted governing body FINA to issue him a warning.

Sun is swimming under a cloud in Gwangju with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) set to hear a doping case against him in September and his presence at the world championships in South Korea has been the source of controversy.

On Sunday, Australian Mack Horton had refused to share the podium with Sun after the Chinese swimmer won the 400m freestyle. Other athletes have also been highly critical of FINA over the doping issue.

Australia’s Mitch Larkin said Horton and Scott deserved praise not a warning for taking a stand on such a big stage. "It’s not like disrespect or a lack of sportsmanship at all. You know they’re truly the most courageous guys and I couldn’t be more proud of both of them," he said.

 China’s Fu Yuanhui tabled the quickest time in the women’s 50m backstroke heats, the 2015 champion touching in a time of 27.70 seconds, 0.15 seconds ahead of Brazil’s Etiene Medeiros, who beat Fu to the title in Budapest two years ago.

In the women’s 200m butterfly, American Hali Flickinger went through as the top seed in a time of 2:05.96, ahead of Hungarian duo Boglarka Kapas and Liliana Szilagyi. In the last event of the early session, the United States topped the mixed 4x100m medley relay (3:41.23) ahead of Australia and Russia.

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