Seto, Sates sparkle as FINA World Cup Doha 2021 kicks off in style

FINA World Cup Doha 2021 yesterday got off to an exciting start as Japan’s Dalya Seto won the gold in the men’s 100m Medley Final at Hamad Aquatic Centre where rising South African star Matthew Sates picked up two medals.

Seto, 27 won the 100m medley final in a time of 51.56 seconds. The Japanese swimming star edged Sates – the overall ranking leader in the ongoing FINA World Cup series - into second spot as the South African clocked a time of 51.74 seconds in what turned out to be an exciting battle. 

Korea’s Sunwoo Hwang grabbed the bronze out of a field of 10 swimmers on the starting ramp. Hwang clocked 52.74 seconds. 

“I am so happy to be back in the pool,” Seto said after his victory. 

Earlier yesterday, Sates won the 400m freestyle gold to underline his intentions in Doha this week. 

Lithuania’s Danas Rapsys grabbed the silver in a time of 3:38.88. Estonia’s Kregor Zirk was the third-best (3:42.35). Qatar’s Nour Eddine Kheddache (4:20.91) also featured in the finals. 

“It’s good to get this result in the first final for me here,” Sates said yesterday. 

“The time seems a bit slow but we are working on it. We (the swimmers) had a great time in the pool. We always have a go at each other. That’s what happened out there,” he said. 

In the women’s 100m medley final, Swiss star Maria Ugolkovaon overcame a strong field of nine swimmers to win the gold in a time of 58.82 seconds.

Sweden’s Michelle Coleman finished in second spot in a time 59.18 seconds while Belgium’s Fanny Lecluyse grabbed the bronze (1:00.09). 

In the men’s 50m freestyle final, Russian star Vladimir Morozov added to his personal collection of gold medals after a long break by winning in a time of 20.89 seconds. 

Morozov also collected 898 points for his convincing win. Kyle Charlmers of Australia (21.02 seconds) and Dutch swimmer Jesse Puts (21.13 seconds) grabbed the silver and bronze to complete the top three.  

In the women’s 50m freestyle final, Dutch swimmer Ranomi Kromowidjojo produced a flying start to win the gold medal in a time of 23.46 seconds. 

“It’s been a great day. I have good memories of Doha, of this pool. So, it is good to be back here. I was training back home. It is very nice to be here,” Kromowidjojo said. 

In the men’s 100m breaststroke final, Dutchman Arno Kamminga showed amazing speed to grab the gold medal in a time of 56.35 seconds in a field of 10 entries. 

In the women’s 200m breaststroke final, Russian star Yulia Efimova produced a near-flawless routine to win the gold in 2:22.19. 

In the men’s 100, butterfly final, American swimmer Tom Shields beat a strong field to win the gold in 49.46 seconds. Hungary’s Szebasztian Szabo grabbed the silver (49.92) while Belgium’s Louis Croenen bagged the bronze (51.54 seconds). 

In the women’s 200m backstroke final, Hungary’s Zsuzsanna Jakabos sealed the deal with a six-entry field clocking a time of 2:06.23 to win the gold.

Switzerland’s Maria Ugolkova clinched the silver (2:06.47) while Slovakia’s Katja Fain was third-best (2:09.90).

In the women’s 50m backstroke final, Dutch swimmer Kira Toussaint emerged winner in a time of 25.93 seconds while Australia’s Holly Barratt finished second-best (26.47). Germany’s Annika Bruhn was third in a time of 28.42. 

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