With a medal at stake, South Africa’s Lara van Niekerk was unable to build on her good performance in the semi-finals of the 50 m breaststroke event at the World Swimming Championships in Fookeaka.
The young Pretorian had to settle for fourth place in the finals after Ruta Meilutyte, Lilly King and Benedetta Pilato with her time of 30.09.
Her time in the semi-finals was 29.91; an effort that would have earned her the silver medal in the finals.
Ruta Meilutyte from Lithuania once again underlined her class when she swam a world record time for the second consecutive time.
The 26-year-old swimmer completed the races in a blistering time of 29.16; considerably faster than her semi-final effort of 29.30.
— World Aquatics (@WorldAquatics) July 30, 2023
Van Niekerk is the Commonwealth champion in this item after she blew water in her opponents’ eyes with a spectacular time of 29.73 in Birmingham last year.
However, Meilutyte showed that she is the favorite to taste Olympic gold in Paris.
- Results of the 50m breaststroke finals:
- Ruta Meilutyte: 29.16
- Lilly King: 29.94
- Benedetta Pilato: 30.04
- Lara van Niekerk: 30.09
- Anita Bottazzo: 30.11
- Qianting Tang: 30.22
- Satomi Suzuki: 30.44
- Eneli Yefimova: 30.48