Germany strikes major blow in hunt for Olympic berth

London 2012 Water Polo

Edmonton (April 1) - The hunt is on for the final four places at the London Olympic Games and 11 men’s teams are competing for the honour at the Olympic Games Qualification Tournament in Edmonton, Canada. In the massive Kinsmen Centre, host to the 1978 Commonwealth Games for aquatics, competition started in earnest with the loss of one team missing. Venezuela was a late withdrawal through travel difficulties, meaning Canada was robbed of its opening-day clash. However, Germany and Romania provided the best competition of the day in the tough Group A. There is much hype over who will flow through to the Olympics with Group A containing many top contenders.

Germany seemed to have control of much of the match against Romania but allowed Romania to level in the third and get ahead early in the fourth before retaking the lead at 9-8 with 3:37 remaining in the game. Both teams took timeouts but it was Romania who scored to level at 11 seconds on the clock. Germany was not dejected and scored the winner with five second left. Both goals were scored off deflections and German captain Marc Politze was involved in both, first as the defender and then as the scorer of the last goal. In other Group A games, European No 2 Montenegro dispensed with the Netherlands 12-6 and Greece crushed the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia 12-2.

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Promising performances at Japan's Junior Olympic Cup

Federations News

The 34th Junior Olympic Cup, a famous aquatics event organised by the Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC), concluded on a successful note at the Tokyo-Tatsumi International Swimming Center (T-TISC) on March 30, 2012 in Tokyo (JPN). The four-day competition gathered 3'638 junior swimmers (1'907 boys and 1'731 girls) from 887 clubs from all over Japan to compete in 25m events.

A new national record, five high school records, one junior high school record, two elementary school records and 19 meet records were set at the event. Among girls, Miki Uchida established a new national record in the 50m freestyle (24.58). She is a member of Itoman Swimming School Tatebayashi. Among boys, Yusuke Kudo broke the high school record in both the 50m and 100m backstroke, posting 23.97 and 51.70, respectively. The young talent swims at WaterMates Swim Club. Both Uchida and Kudo were designated Swimmer of the Cup. The Itoman Swimming School won the combined title of the Cup.

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Brazil in top shape at South American Swimming Championships

Federations News

Brazil won 72 medals at the South American Swimming Championships taking place in Belem (BRA) from March 11-25, 2012. The biennial aquatics championships bring together all nations from the CONSANAT, the South American Swimming Confederation tom compete in Swimming, Diving, Synchronised Swimming, Water Polo and Open Water Swimming.   

Brazilians swimmers captured 51 medals (26 gold, 19 silver and six bronze medals). Home hero Cesar Cielo brought more gold to his name, winning five events and posting this season's best time in the 50m butterfly: 23s26.

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FINA in mourning - Prof. Winton Arthur Hawksworth (RSA)

FINA Family

FINA announces with great sadness the loss of Prof. Winton Arthur Hawksworth (RSA), member of the FINA Doping Control Review Board (DCRB) since its creation in 1999. After a short illness, Prof. Hawksworth passed away on March 26, 2012. He is survived by his wife Pauline, his four children and five grandchildren.

In a message addressed to FINA, Dr. Andrew Pipe, Chairman of the DCRB, recalled a “wonderful friend and colleague, a superb scientist, and an educator who influenced the lives of thousands of students in South Africa and so many others who were touched by his generosity of spirit.  His warmth and gentle good humour will be missed by all on the FINA DCRB and his many other friends in the FINA family”.

To his family and friends, FINA addresses its sincere condolences.

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Swimmer Spyros Gianniotis (GRE) will be the first torchbearer

London 2012 Highlights

Spyros GIANNIOTIS (GRE), gold at the 10km race in Shanghai 2011 - credit: Giorgio Scala/FINA10km open water swimming world champion Spyros Gianniotis (GRE) will have the honour of being the first torchbearer of the Olympic flame for the 2012 Olympic Games in London (GBR). On the traditional ceremony, to be held in Ancient Olympia, on May 10, Gianniotis will receive the flame from the High Priestess, after it has been lit by the sun’s rays, and will initiate the 3000km relay of the flame within Greece.

In an announcement made by the Hellenic Olympic Committee, it was also revealed that the flame will be passing through 43 cities in the country where the Olympic Games were born, and will be carried by approximately 500 torchbearers. After a final ceremony on May 17 in the Panathinaiko Stadium in Athens (where were held the first modern Games, in 1896), the flame will be given to the LOCOG delegation before flying to Great Britain.

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