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It is always the same with the German swimmers: Like in Sydney 2000 they started the relay as world record holder and at the end they finished forth. Why are they not able to show a good performance under the pressure, when it matters? At least Steffen swam a good time, but at that point the medal was already out of sight. Congratulations to the Aussies. They are a well deserved world champion.

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First, the result for the final synchronized swimming competition at Melbourne 2007.

Team Free Routine Final:

1. Russia

2. Spain

3. Japan

The Canadian team finished in sixth place.

Second, some more final diving results.

Women's 3m Springboard:

1. Jingjing GUO (China) -> 381.75 points

2. Minxua WU (China) -> 368.80 points

3. Tania Cagnotto (Italy) -> 341.70 points

Top Canadian: Blythe Hartley placed EIGHTH with 301.35 points.

Men's 10m Platform:

1. Gleb Galperin (Russia) -> 554.70 points

2. Luxin ZHOU (China) -> 519.15 points

3. Yue LIN (China) -> 513.70 points

Top Canadian: Alexandre Despatie placed EIGHTH with 453.75 points.

Third, the last of the results for the open water competitions.

Women's 25km OPEN WATER:

1. Britta Kamrau-Corestein (Germany) -> 5:37:11.66

2. Kalyn Keller (USA) -> 5:39:39.62

3. Ksenia Popova (Russia) -> 5:39:51.51

No Canadians entered in this event.

Men's 25km OPEN WATER:

1. Yury Kudinov (Russia) -> 5:16:45.55

2. Marco Formentini (Italy) -> 5:18:36.80

3. Mohamed Zanaty (Egypt) -> 5:19:23.23

No Canadians entered in this event.

And, now, the main swimming events in the pool.

Men's 400m FREESTYLE:

1. Tae Hwan PARK (South Korea) -> 3:44.30

2. Oussama Mellouli (Tunisia) -> 3:45.12

3. Grant Hackett (AUSTRALIA) -> 3:45.43

No Canadian in the final 8.

Women's 400m FREESTYLE:

1. Laure Manaudou (France) -> 4:02.61 (CHAMPIONSHIP RECORD!)

2. Otylia Jedrzejczak (Poland) -> 4:04.23

3. Ai Shibata (Japan) -> 4:05.19

No Canadian in the final 8.

Men's 4X100m FREESTYLE:

1. USA (Michael Phelps, Neil Walker, Cullen Jones and Jason Lezak) -> 3:12.72 (CHAMPIONSHIP RECORD!)

2. Italy (Massimiliano Rosolino, Alessandro Calvi, Christian Galenda and Filippo Magnini) -> 3:14.04

3. France (Fabien Gilot, Frederick Bousquet, Julien Sicot and Alain Bernard) -> 3:14.68

The Canadian team placed seventh here.

Women's 4X100m FREESTYLE:

1. AUSTRALIA (Lisbeth Lenton, Melanie Schlanger, Shayne Reese and Jodie Henry) -> 3:35.48 (CHAMPIONSHIP RECORD!)

2. USA (Natalie Coughlin, Lacey Nymeyer, Amanda Weir and Kara Lynn Joyce) -> 3:35.68

3. Netherlands (Inge Dekker, Ranomi Kromowidjojo, Femke Heemskerk and Marleen Veldhuis) -> 3:36.81

No Canadian team in the final 8.

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Women's 3m Springboard:

1. Jingjing GUO (China) -> 381.75 points

2. Minxua WU (China) -> 368.80 points

3. Tania Cagnotto (Italy) -> 341.70 points

The chinese seem to be unreachable there.. just imagine in Beijing.. anyway Brava Tania!

Men's 25km OPEN WATER:

1. Yury Kudinov (Russia) -> 5:16:45.55

2. Marco Formentini (Italy) -> 5:18:36.80

3. Mohamed Zanaty (Egypt) -> 5:19:23.23

A great silver by the 37 years old Formentini. :)

Men's 4X100m FREESTYLE:

1. USA (Michael Phelps, Neil Walker, Cullen Jones and Jason Lezak) -> 3:12.72 (CHAMPIONSHIP RECORD!)

2. Italy (Massimiliano Rosolino, Alessandro Calvi, Christian Galenda and Filippo Magnini) -> 3:14.04

3. France (Fabien Gilot, Frederick Bousquet, Julien Sicot and Alain Bernard) -> 3:14.68

:)

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It is always the same with the German swimmers: Like in Sydney 2000 they started the relay as world record holder and at the end they finished forth. Why are they not able to show a good performance under the pressure, when it matters? At least Steffen swam a good time, but at that point the medal was already out of sight. Congratulations to the Aussies. They are a well deserved world champion.

Well, at least at the European championships the Germans usually show a good performance. And they also had good times at the 2003 WCH in Barcelona, for example. But now we have to fear that the "Olympic curse" on the German swimmers is expanding to a "Olympic and WCH curse". OK, there are still seven days of competition to go, but it's never good when the Germans already fail at the psychologically highly important first day.

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Well, at least at the European championships the Germans usually show a good performance. And they also had good times at the 2003 WCH in Barcelona, for example. But now we have to fear that the "Olympic curse" on the German swimmers is expanding to a "Olympic and WCH curse". OK, there are still seven days of competition to go, but it's never good when the Germans already fail at the psychologically highly important first day.

Don't worry, Steffen will win the 100 meter free style comfortably.

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Looks like a sign of things to come for Canada in Beijing '08. From 22 medals in '96 to 14 to 12, and probably < 10 next year.

I guess, if Canada does not want to repeat their sad performance from Athens 2004 in Beijing next year, they better start working on getting their reputation back now.

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Sochi 2014 Congratulates Gold Medalists in Melbourne

Russia’s Gold Rush at the FINA World Swimming Championships.

As the first week of FINA World Swimming Championships comes to a close Russia has once again proven it is one of the world's leading sports nations, currently on top of the medal tally.

Russia has stamped their supremacy on the sport of synchronised swimming, earning gold in four out of the six finals staged so far. Also dominating the Open Water events with wins in the 5km Women's, 10km Women's and 10km Men's.

Russians are causing a serious splash. In a display of skill, Maria Gromova, Natalia Ischenko, Elvira Khasyanova, Olga Kuzhela, Anna Nasekina, Elena Ovchinnikova, Svetlana Romashina and Anna Shorina won the nation's fourth gold medal with a near-perfect 99.000 points in the synchronised swimming Team Technical final.

Sochi 2014 Bid CEO, Dmitry Chernyshenko says: "We are extremely proud of the Russian team's performance in Australia. Russia is a country passionate about sports, and successful in both summer and winter disciplines. The proposed Sochi 2014 plan would serve to facilitate such success by Russian winter athletes through the provision of world-class training and competition facilities within their own country for the first time in Russia's history.

It is our goal to provide inspiration to all athletes, both Russian and International, elite-level and amateur, a feat we are confident we will achieve should Sochi 2014 win the honour of hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games."

The 12th FINA World Swimming Championships competition will run until Sunday, April 1st, 2007.

Organised by FINA, the International Swimming Federation, the event is taking place across three sites in Melbourne - the Rod Laver Arena, the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre (MSAC) and the St. Kilda Beach.

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The desastrous performances among the German swimmers continue: Neither Helge Meeuw nor Steffen Driesen were able to qualify for the men's 100 m backstroke final. Meeuw was even worse in the semifinal than in the heats. Tomorrow, we'll also have no German swimmer in the women's 100 m breaststroke and 100 m backstroke finals. The major surprise is that Antje Buschschulte, favourite for a 100 m backstroke medal, has failed completely.

So the curse of Sydney 2000 and Athens 2004 has definitely expanded to Melbourne 2007. I just hope that this psychologically very bad start into these World Championships doesn't affect Britta Steffen, at the least.

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More results, starting from the last of the diving events.

Women's 3m Synchro Springboard:

1. China (WU Minxia and GUO Jingjing) -> 355.80 points

2. Germany (Ditte Kotzian and Heike Fischer) -> 318.45 points

3. AUSTRALIA (Sharleen Stratton and Briony Cole) -> 313.14 points

Canada did not qualify for the final.

Men's 10m Synchro Platform:

1. China (HUO Liang and LIN Yue) -> 489.48 points

2. Russia (Dmitriy Dobroskok and Gleb Galperin) -> 467.16 points

3. USA (David Alasdair Boudia and Thomas Finchum) -> 463.56 points

No Canadian team for this event.

Now, the swimming events.

Men's 50m Butterfly:

1. Roland Schoeman (South Africa) -> 23.18 sec

2. Ian Crocker (USA) -> 23.47 sec

3. Jakob Schiott Andkjaer (Denmark) -> 23.56 sec

No Canadian in the final.

Men's 100m Breaststroke:

1. Brendan Hansen (USA) -> 59.80 sec

2. Kosuke Kitajima (Japan) -> 59.96 sec

3. Brenton Rickard (AUSTRALIA) -> 1:00.58

No Canadian in the final.

Women's 100m Butterfly:

1. Lisbeth Lenton (AUSTRALIA) -> 57.15 sec (CHAMPIONSHIP RECORD!)

2. Jessicah Schipper (AUSTRALIA) -> 57.24 sec

3. Natalie Coughlin (USA) -> 57.34 sec

No Canadian in the final.

Women's 200m Individual Medley:

1. Kathryn Hoff (USA) -> 2:10.13 (CHAMPIONSHIP RECORD!)

2. Kirsty Coventry (Zimbabwe) -> 2:10.76

3. Stephanie Rice (AUSTRALIA) -> 2:11.42

Canada's Julia Wilkinson placed EIGHTH with the time of 2:15.28

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GRANDE FEDERICA PELLEGRINI!!! NEW WORLD RECORD!

Federica Pellegrini qualified for the 200m freestyle semi finals in one minute 56.47 seconds, a new World Record. She ended up shaving 0.17 seconds off German Franziska Van Almsick's world record of 1:56.64 set in 2002.

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Massive story brewing tonight

A Ukraine coach has been arrested by police after beating up a swimmer (who happens to be his daughter!)

Whole incident was captured on camera too!

http://media.fairfax.com.au/?rid=26799

(That is an "edited" version, apparently it gets much much worse, so bad that the TV news refused to show it and went on for 6 minutes!)

http://www.foxsports.com.au/story/0,8659,2....html?from=news

Comes on top of a Russian Diving Coach being arrested yesterday after his hands got a bit active with a female hotel worker

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Police detain Ukraine coach

March 27, 2007

A 38-year-old Ukrainian coach was arrested Tuesday night after Victorian police received "distressing" vision of the man in a physical altercation with his daughter, a swimmer at the world championships.

The swimmer is being interviewed by police after footage from inside the marshalling area at Rod Laver Arena showed the young female being assaulted by the man.

Victorian Police Inspector Rick Nugent confirmed both the man and woman were being interviewed, the police tracking the pair down after receiving vision from host broadcasters the Nine Network around 1800 AEST.

"It's disappointing, it was distressing vision," said Nugent.

"Our concerns were very much for the welfare of the female athlete and we immediately sought to identify the parties, in particular the female and make inquiries with respect to her welfare.

"She is well ... she did not require any medical treatment.

"We have also identified the male, he is a 38-year-old Ukraine man who is her father, he is also her coach.

"At the end of the interview and after all of the evidence has been examined we will make the appropriate decision in respect of where we go from there."

Policed have not ruled out revoking the Ukrainian's visa and did not say whether the young woman would be kept away from her father following the interviews.

Melbourne 2007 director Michael Scott said the incident was "unacceptable" and confirmed world swimming governing body FINA had revoked the man's accreditation immediately and would complete their own investigation into the matter.

It was the first time television cameras have been allowed into that section of the athletes' area at a world championships.

"It is unacceptable in Australia, it is unacceptable anywhere else in the world that sort of behaviour," said Scott.

"It is a very serious matter.

"FINA have advised us they have withdrawn the accreditation of the individual immediately.

"FINA will conduct their own investigation into that matter and announce their outcome as soon as possible."

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Looks like a sign of things to come for Canada in Beijing '08. From 22 medals in '96 to 14 to 12, and probably < 10 next year.

Most likely. I think we'll hover around the same total of medals won in Athens. By London 2012 we should do better. At the moment, the majority of athlete spending is going towards our winter athletes. After Vancouver 2010, more funding should be spread over to the Summer Athletes.

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Well, the water polo events are now in the playoff match stages now.

Also, more swimming finals and, yes, new world records in the process.

Men's 100m Backstroke:

1. Aaron Peirsol (USA) -> 52.98 sec (WORLD RECORD!)

2. Ryan Lochte (USA) -> 53.50 sec

3. Liam Tancock (Great Britain) -> 53.61 sec

No Canadian in the final.

Women's 100m Backstroke:

1. Natalie Coughlin (USA) -> 59.44 sec (WORLD RECORD!)

2. Laure Manaudou (France) -> 59.87 sec

3. Reiko Nakamura (Japan) -> 1:00.40

No Canadian in the final.

Women's 100m Breaststroke:

1. Leisel Jones (AUSTRALIA) -> 1:05.72 (CHAMPIONSHIP RECORD!)

2. Tara Kirk (USA) -> 1:06.34

3. Anna Khlistunova (Ukraine) -> 1:07.27

No Canadian in the final.

Men's 200 Freestyle:

1. Michael Phelps (USA) -> 1:43.86 (WORLD RECORD!)

2. Pieter Van Den Hoogenband (Netherlands) -> 1:46.28

3. Tae Hwan PARK (South Korea) -> 1:46.73

No Canadian in the final.

Women's 1,500m Freestyle:

1. Kate Ziegler (USA) -> 15:53.05 (CHAMPIONSHIP RECORD!)

2. Flavia Rigamonti (Switzerland) -> 15:55.38

3. Ai Shubata (Japan) -> 15:58.55

No Canadian in the final.

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GRANDE FEDERICA PELLEGRINI!!! NEW WORLD RECORD!

Federica Pellegrini qualified for the 200m freestyle semi finals in one minute 56.47 seconds, a new World Record. She ended up shaving 0.17 seconds off German Franziska Van Almsick's world record of 1:56.64 set in 2002.

Now she lost it again to Laure Manaudou of France. Even silver medalist Annika Lurz was under the old mark. Federica Pellegrini has lost her record but won the bronze medal.

PS: The first medal for Germany. Finally.

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Waterpolo (men) Quarter Final Round:

Serbia- Greece: 8-3

Croatia- Russia: 13-3

Spain- Italy: 7-5

Hungary- Germany: 13-6

Semi-finals:

Serbia-Croatia

Spain-Hungary

Oh, A Serbia-Croatia matchup, always interesting, Hungary should easily be through, like always

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Watched Michael Phelps not just break, but utterly smash (almost a full second) the 200m butterfly world record last night.

Wow, that guy is truly one of the all-time greats! It was a privelege to have watched such an amazing swim!

I must admit that before Athens, when the pressure and hype were on him to claim 6 Golds, I had my doubts about him. And of course, he missed that mark.

But now that guy is a few years older, a few years more experienced and has an astounding future ahead. So dominant is he at the moment, I think he could indeed finally break Mark Spitz's all-time record at Beijing.

You should appreciate him America, athletes like him only come along now and then.

And on the championships themselves, jeez I'm enjoying them. It's given me a taste of what to expect next year with tghe summer games. Bring on Beijing!

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Despite the Canadian team that seems to be "under par" in the swimming events so far, Canadian national records have been broken in Melbourne.

Link: CBC: Canadian Swimmers Setting National Records At Worlds

As for more results, here they are.

Men's 50m Breaststroke:

1. Oleg Lisogor (Ukraine) -> 27.66 sec

2. Brendan Hansen (USA) -> 27.69 sec

3. Cameron Van Der Burgh (South Africa) -> 27.88 sec

No Canadian in the final.

Women's 200m Freestyle:

1. Laure Manaudou (France) -> 1:55.52 (WORLD RECORD!)

2. Annika Lurz (Germany) -> 1:55.68

3. Federica Pellegrini (Italy) -> 1:56.97

No Canadian in the final.

Men's 200m Butterfly:

1. Michael Phelps (USA) -> 1:52.09 (WORLD RECORD!)

2. Peng WU (China) -> 1:55.13

3. Nikolay Skvortsov (Russia) -> 1:55.22

No Canadian in the final.

Men's 800m Freestyle:

1. Oussama Mellouli (Tunisia) -> 7:46.95

2. Przemyslaw Stanczyk (Poland) -> 7:47.91

3. Craig Stevens (AUSTRALIA) -> 7:48.67

Ryan Cochrane of Canada placed EIGHTH with the time of 7:56.56

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I can't believe it, its completely and utterly impossible that a Canadian not only won a medal, but won a gold medal. WTF, this ain't right, this is only the 3 gold at the WCH level (after Victor Davis and some other guy) and tenth gold medal in major competition. :o:P:o:lol:

BTW the Canadian tied with an Italian

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Wooo-woooo Michael!! And Natalie!!

Ah, that's better!!!

I really mean it, with Phelps, you now have another successor in the line of Owens, Spitz, Lewis etc.

Congrats to the USA!!

And also, please allow me to gloat over another medal for our women's swimming team _ Gold to Jessica Shipper in the 200m butterfly, righting the wrong against her from Montreal.

Actually, it just shows you how amazing Phelps is that the newspaper coverage and front pages today are about Phelps' wins and records, with our own medal win for Jessica relegated to inside pages and small stories.

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