Proud and Hopkin dash their way to the podium to add to Britain’s medal tallyDecember 17, 2022
Ben Proud and Anna Hopkin won Great Britain a silver and bronze respectively on day five of the 2022 FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) in Melbourne.
The pair both provided exceptional swims in the ‘splash and dash’ 50m Freestyle events as they added Britain’s second and third medals of the championships.
Proud scored Britain’s best result of the weekend so far in the Men’s 50m Freestyle as he narrowly missed out on retaining his title after securing a superb silver medal.
The 2021 champion had lane five for the race after his second place finish in the semi-final yesterday but he improved his time by 0.27 as he battled the Cayman Island’s Jordan Crooks for the title.
The 28-year-old Proud was neck and neck with Crooks at the halfway stage as the pair touched the wall at the same time but Crooks had just enough in to steal the title off of Proud who finished just 0.03 off the winner.
It’s another sensational showing from the Bath University swimmer however as he added to his World (50m), European and Commonwealth titles in the event with silver in a sensational year for him.
After the race Proud said the results rounded off an excellent 2022: “It was brilliant for me [to get the silver medal].
“Yesterday morning seeing Jordan [Crooks] absolutely smash the scene it gave a different challenge and new dynamic to the race and I just wanted to come in tonight and do a really good swim.
“That’s not a bad one for me, I’m happy with it even though I always want more, but to finish this year with all the gold medals, plus this silver, I think for me that was perfect.
“I want to come back next year with more drive and see what I can do but I’m happy. I’m really pleased to see Jordan come on the scene, so it’s a really exciting future.”
Lewis Burras also impressed as he made the final alongside Proud.
Burras performed well to make the final but had to settle for eighth despite a late push as he closed in on a number of swimmers ahead of him.
His time was a 20.95.
Hopkin’s brilliant bronze
In the Women’s race Anna Hopkin continued an impressive win by adding a medal to her name with bronze.
Hopkin has impressed during her relay legs throughout the week so far and continued that incredible speed in this fast paced final.
She got off the blocks and settled into a commendable fifth place at the turn before she turned on the style in the final stretch of the race.
The Loughborough Performance Centre swimmer timed her finish to perfection as she stretched and won the race to the wall for bronze ahead of the next three swimmers.
The finish was crucial as Hopkin was just 0.05 ahead of sixth place Meg Harris (Australia) in an incredibly close finish.
The result gave Hopkin her first world championships medal and after the race she shared her happiness in stepping on the podium with World Aquatics reporter Nick Hope.
She said: “I can’t believe it, I mean I knew it was going to be close and it was possible but I didn’t want to put too much pressure on it and just enjoy it – so yeah I’m so happy to have got a medal, amazing!
“I’ve learned over my time coming into a final it’s quite hard to just focus on your own race and I’m getting better at that and I wasn’t overwhelmed by what was going on around me and just stuck to my plan and it worked so I’m really happy.
“Competing in Australia has been amazing. I think because it’s short course the crowd is really close around you and I think that Aussies always turn out for a swim meet and they’re making a lot of noise and definitely it spurs you on.”
Job done for Peaty and Clark
Adam Peaty and Imogen Clark both booked their place in tomorrow’s final session of the championships after reaching the Men’s and Women’s 50m Breaststroke final respectively.
Peaty, following on from his bronze medal in the 100m event on day three, booked his place into the final with the seventh quickest time as he continues his return to action.
The three-time Olympic gold medallist finished third in his semi-final but qualification was much tighter than it was for the 100m final as he was pushed down to seventh after the second semi-final was swum.
His time of a 25.85 was enough to secure him lane one as he looks to add another medal to his collection.
Imogen Clark impressed as she got off the blocks quickly to help her reach the Women’s 50m Breaststroke final.
Clark turned first in her semi-final before finishing just 0.02 behind China’s Qianting Tang in the race which ended up giving her the fifth fastest time overall.
Her time was a 29.30 which breaks her own British record for the event that she will look to better once again in tomorrow’s final.
Elsewhere Abbie Wood fell short of a place in the Women’s 400m Individual Medley final by just 0.42 as she finished ninth fastest in the heats during the morning session.