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Swimming, Day 3 - Women's 1500m freestyle: Ledecky (USA) breaks World Record for second Barcelona gold

BCN2013 - Swimming

 Katie Ledecky shattered the women's 1500m freestyle world recordSixteen-year-old American Katie Ledecky shattered the women's 1500m freestyle world record and won the world crown in an epic duel with defending champion Lotte Friis (DEN) to claim her second title of the Barcelona World Championships. Ledecky, Olympic 800m freestyle gold medallist and newly crowned world 400m freestyle champion, was locked in a battle with Friis throughout the 30-length race, edging clear in the final 100 metres to win in 15:36.53. Friis, who took the world silver in 2009 and gold in 2011, touched in 15:38.88 and was also inside the long-standing 15:42.54 world mark set by Ledecky's fellow American Kate Ziegler in Mission Viejo, California, on June 17, 2007. Lauren Boyle (NZL), Barcelona 400m freestyle bronze medallist, came through strongly in the later stages to claim another bronze in 15:44.71.

Ledecky led through the first 250 metres but Friis was in front by the 300m mark as they swam neck and neck in what had become a race for two, with the rest scrapping for bronze until Boyle detached herself from the others. Ledecky hit the front at 1300 metres and ensured the second US victory of the evening after Missy Franklin's win in the 100m backstroke.

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Water Polo Men: Day 5: CRO 7 AUS 6 in extra time (FT: 5-5. ET: 2-1)

BCN2013 - Water Polo

CRO vs AUSThe Aussie Sharks prowled, snapped at Olympic champion Croatia and nearly celebrated with a feast before losing a thrilling 7-6 extra-time, quarterfinal at Bernat Picornell Pool this evening. Croatia clawed back into the game after being 4-2 and 5-3 down against Australia early in the final quarter to level the match at 5-5 and force extra time.

It might not have gone to extra time had Australia’s championship highest goal scorer Richard Campbell not hit the right upright on extra-man attack with 18 seconds left from two metres.

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High Diving, Day 2: History was made: Cesilie Carlton (USA) is the first World champion!

BCN2013 - High Diving

Cesilie Carlton (USA), gold medallistThey were only six, but Cesilie Carlton (USA) was happy as she had won against 60 other competitors! The North American high diver (who suffers from vertigo!) became the first world champion in this discipline, getting the best accumulated results after the three rounds of dives on this hot, sunny and windy Tuesday in Barcelona. Carlton won the competition in 211.60, while Ginger Huber (USA, silver, 206.70) and Anna Bader (GER, bronze, 203.90) completed the podium of this historical event.

This novelty at the FINA World Championships is almost a première for these divers also – in fact, besides the shows and exhibitions, the most known competition of High Diving is the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series, an annual circuit with several legs around the world. Until a couple of weeks ago, these series were only open to men. On July 14, in Malcesina (ITA), four of the six finalists in Barcelona (Tara Hyer Tira and Huber from USA, Bader, and Stephanie de Lima from Canada) made their debut in this circuit.

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Swimming, Day 3 - Women's 100m backstroke: Franklin (USA) maintains winning ways

BCN2013 - Swimming

Franklin (USA) maintains winning waysOlympic champion Missy Franklin captured her second gold medal of the Barcelona World Championships with an emphatic victory in the 100m backstroke. The 18-year-old American, who led the USA to victory in the 4x100m freestyle relay on the opening evening in the pool, dominated the race from start to finish. She turned at 50 metres in 28.62, inside world record pace, and won by a comfortable margin in 58.42, finishing 0.30 seconds outside the 2009 world mark of Gemma Spofforth (GBR).

Emily Seebohm (AUS) took the silver, 0.64 seconds behind, in 59.06, and Aya Terakawa (JPN), 50m backstroke silver medallist in 2011, the bronze in 59.23. The 1-2-3 order repeated the medal podium of the 2012 Olympics. Franklin won four gold medals at the London Olympics and is in the hunt for more medals in Barcelona.

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Swimming, Day 3 - Men's 200m freestyle: Agnel (FRA) wins second Barcelona gold

BCN2013 - Swimming

Agnel (FRA) wins second Barcelona goldOlympic champion Yannick Agnel (FRA) bagged his second gold medal of the World Championships with a runaway victory in the men's 200m freestyle. Agnel, already a Barcelona gold medallist in the French 4x100m freestyle relay on Day 1, led all the way to take the title in 1:44.20. Conor Dwyer (USA) came through from fifth on the last length to snatch the silver in 1:45.32, with Danila Izotov (RUS), bronze medallist in 2009, claiming another bronze, in 1:45.59. It was a second Barcelona bronze for Izotov after he helped Russia to third place in the 4x100m freestyle relay.

Defending champion Ryan Lochte (USA) held third place in the middle stages of the race but finished outside the medals in fourth spot (1:45.64). Lochte, the reigning Olympic 400m individual medley champion, also finished fourth in the 200m freestyle at the 2012 London Olympics. Kosuke Hagino (JPN), silver medallist in the Barcelona 400m freestyle, was fifth. Olympic silver medallist Yang Sun chose not to contest the event, concentrating instead on the 400, 800 and 1500m freestyle, having got his campaign off to a flying start with victory in the 400. Tae-hwan Park (KOR), champion in 2011, did not defend his title.

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Water Polo Men, Day 5: HUN 9 GRE 3

BCN2013 - Water Polo

HUN vs GREHungary shut down the Greece extra-man attack and swam away with the first quarterfinal 9-3 at Bernat Picornell Pool. The normally reliable Greek man-up play was not to be seen as it converted just two from 15 chances. It must be said that Hungary was pressured heavily as well, but the five-from-13 catch was what killed Greece’s chances to progress to the medal round.

Gaining superiority is what the game is all about and Hungary firstly and then Greece gained the eye of the referees too often and it became a revolving door to the corner of the pool.


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Water Polo Women: Day 5: ESP 9 USA 6

BCN2013 - Water Polo

ESP vs USAIt was the Olympic final all over again. This time the script had changed and Spain won instead of United States of America. Four times USA came within one goal of Spain, but that was it. Spain won 9-6 — a six-goal turnaround from the London Olympics just a year ago.

There was no Maggie Steffens five-goal haul but there was a Jennifer Pareja four-goal procession in the first half as Spain turned at 4-2, levelled the third quarter 1-1 and won the last 3-1. This was all about Spain, five times the bridesmaid and twice finishing level with USA in major competition, but never winning before tonight.

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Water Polo Women, Day 5: Spain inflicts more pain on USA as Olympic champion bows out of medals

BCN2013 - Water Polo

Spain inflicts more pain on USA as Olympic champion bows out of medalsFor the second day in a row, Spanish water polo teams have bundled United States of America out of medal contention at the Bernat Picornell Pool. On Sunday, the men defeated USA 10-6 in a quarterfinal qualifier and tonight in a rematch of the 2012 London Olympic Games final, it was Spain’s turn to turn the tables on the USA, winning 9-6, vastly different from the USA’s 8-5 victory a year ago.

With half of Barcelona seemingly in the stands, they cheered on Jennifer Pareja and her team to what was an historic victory as Spain has never beaten USA in a major championship — drawing two and losing five.

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Water Polo Women, Day 5: HUN 11 NED 7

BCN2013 - Water Polo

HUN vs NEDShooting efficiency proved the killer punch as Hungary produced a stunning 7-1 opening half and finished 11-7 over Netherlands in the third quarterfinal at Bernat Picornell Pool this evening. Hungary became the second top-four team to make the semifinals after Australia earlier beat Greece.

The statistics say it all with Hungary shooting at 44 per cent with its 25 attempts. Netherlands, looking so nervous as the whistling of accurately fired yellow balls whipped past their heads on a regular basis, could manage just 21.9 percent from 32 shots. The Dutch could not say they didn’t have their chances.

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Swimming, Day 2: World Record for Meilutyte (LTU)

BCN2013 - Swimming

Olympic champion Ruta Meilutyte claimed the first world recordOlympic champion Ruta Meilutyte claimed the first world record of the 15th FINA World Championships in a landmark swim for Lithuania in the women's 100m reaststroke. Meilutyte,16, clocked 1:04.35 in the semi-finals to better the 1:04.45 set by Jessica Hardy (USA) in Federal Way, Washington, on August 7, 2009. It was the first swimming world record in the 50m pool for her country since it gained its independence on the break-up of the former Soviet Union.

Four world titles were decided in the pool, with the victors coming from three continents, embracing Oceania, Europe and the Americas. Christian Sprenger provided Australia with the first gold of the evening, beating Olympic champion Cameron van der Burgh (RSA) into second place in the men's 100m breaststroke. Sprenger prevailed in 58.79 ahead of Van der Burgh (58.97) and Felipe Lima (BRA, 59.65) in an event won last time by Alexander Dale Oen (NOR), who sadly died in 2012.

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