TOKYO, July 27 (Xinhua) — “Iron Lady” Katinka Hosszu of Hungary moved towards a successful title defense as she made the women’s 200m individual medley final here on Tuesday morning.
Hosszu, who won the women’s 200m IM at Rio 2016, set the event’s world record time of two m and 06.12 seconds at the 2015 World Championships in Kazan. Yu Yiting of China swam 2:09.72 to also make it into the final.
In the men’s 200m freestyle, Britain’s Tom Dean and Duncan Scott claimed gold and silver with 1:44.22 and 1:44.26 respectively, while Fernando Scheffer took the bronze for Brazil with 1:44.66.
“I’ve been thinking about this since I was eight years old and today is the day,” said Dean.
In the men’s 100m backstroke, Evgeny Rylov of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) swept to the gold medal in 51.98 seconds. His compatriot Kliment Kolesnikov took silver in 52.00, with 2016 winner Ryan Murphy of the United States finishing third with 52.19. Team USA thus missed the chance for a seventh consecutive Olympic gold medal in this event, a run stretching back to 1992.
Rylov had won five medals at the 2019 World Championships, including a silver in the men’s 100m backstroke.
“I’ve proved myself at the shorter distance. Now I’ve won but I don’t realise that I’m an Olympic champion,” Rylov replied on his reaction to victory after coming third at Rio 2016 in the 200m backstroke.
China’s Xu Jiayu finished fifth. Five years ago, he claimed the silver medal at Rio 2016, which was China’s first Olympic medal in a men’s backstroke event.
Kaylee McKeown won Australia the first Olympic gold medal in the women’s 100m backstroke by setting a new Olympic record of 57.47 seconds. She is the current world record holder with a time of 57.45 seconds.
“I wouldn’t have it any other way because I don’t think I’d be where I am today without all that has happened,” McKeown said on what it meant to win gold, given what she has been through.
Kylie Masse of Canada snatched the silver in 57.72, while the USA’s Regan Smith took the bronze with 58.05.
American Lydia Jacoby won the women’s 100m breaststroke in 1:04.95. South Africa’s Tatjana Schoenmaker claimed silver with 1:05.22, ahead of reigning world champion Lilly King in 1:05.54.
“I was definitely racing for a medal, I knew I had it in me but I wasn’t really expecting a gold medal. When I looked up at the scoreboard it was insane,” said Jacoby.
In the semifinals on Tuesday, Siobhan Bernadette Haughey from Hong Kong, China finished second to reach the final of the women’s 200m freestyle, as she seeks to win the first ever Olympic swimming medal for Hong Kong.
Yang Junxuan of China also qualified for the final, and she has a chance to become the second swimmer representing China to win a medal in the women’s 200m freestyle at the Olympic Games, after Pang Jiaying took bronze in 2008.