Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Swimmers haul nine medals from Gold Coast

Scottish swimmers will return from the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games with a superb nine medal haul with the man of the moment, Duncan Scott, adding one final silver with another fantastic performance in the 200m IM.

In another event he has never swum competitively at an international meet, Scott looked at home amongst the event specialists and kept himself in the mix throughout. The lead changed hands at every turn and in the final 50m, despite turning in 6th place, Scott changed up a gear, flying down the final 25m and actually challenged for the top spot.

Mitch Larkin of Australia hung on to claim his fourth gold medal of the meet, but Scott pushed him all the way to a new Games Record of 1:57.67. Scott won silver in 1:57.86, a new PB, while Clyde Lewis (AUS) picked up bronze in 1:58.18. Catching his breath after the race, Scott said,

“That was tough; it took me a while to get out the pool there. It was a good race and great to see Mitch (Larkin, AUS) win his fourth gold. There were loads of guys in that race who could have won it, or touched me out or been in in the top three. It was a real battle, a real dog fight. I enjoyed it but it was tough.”

Speaking about his incredible success in the pool, Scott continued,

“I sat down with my coach beforehand like we always do at every meet and talked about the possibilities, the good things that could happen and the bad things. This is definitely on the good things spectrum. I’m delighted with how things have done so far but there’s still a relay to do and I think there’s a chance there.”

The Mens Medley Relay was the last event of the night and thanks to the quartet of Stephen Milne, Craig Benson, Sean Campsie and Dan Wallace, the Scots had secured a lane for the final. With a complete change in lineup, which featured Craig McNally, Ross Murdoch and Mark Szaranek, the Scots battled hard to stay in the medals. Again it was the anthem of Australia that would be played as the home team rounded off an amazing swimming meet, amassing 73 medals.

England almost ruined the party but had to settle for silver, while the team from South Africa won the battle for bronze. After the race Murdoch said,

“I’m really proud of what we did tonight. There was an outside chance of a medal and we put ourselves on the line trying to secure it, but it wasn’t to be. We wore our kilts as if to go into battle and I’m incredibly proud to do that and be part of this team.”

The time of 3:35.15 was a new Scottish Record for the event.

The girls were also in action in their medley relay final and Kathleen Dawson, Corrie Scott, Keanna MacInnes and Lucy Hope all swam their hearts out to break the Scottish Record in 4:05.17 for fifth.

In other finals Camilla Hattersley concluded her Games with a seventh place finish in the 400m freestyle, while Cassie Wild, Kathleen Dawson and Lucy Hope finished fifth, sixth and eighth respectively for the 50m backstroke.

Focus now turns to the diving competition which starts on Wednesday 11 April and runs until Saturday 14 April and is being held at the Optus Aquatics Centre.

Prelims start at 10:00 (01:00 GMT), while finals begin at 19:00 (10:00 GMT)