Toumarkin targeting 200 back final

Yakov Toumarkin is hoping to become just the sixth Israeli swimmer to reach a final at the world championships in an Olympic event when he takes part in the 200-meters backstroke heats on Thursday.

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August 6, 2015 06:51
2 minute read.
A man exercises next to the Olympic rings placed at the Madureira Park ahead the Rio 2016 Olympics

A man exercises next to the Olympic rings placed at the Madureira Park ahead the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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Yakov Toumarkin is hoping to become just the sixth Israeli swimmer to reach a final at the world championships in an Olympic event when he takes part in the 200-meters backstroke heats on Thursday.

The 23-year-old proved yet again that he is in great form when he finished the 200m individual medley in 11th place in Kazan, Russia on Wednesday, clocking a new personal best of 1:58.86 minutes in the semifinals, 32 hundredths of a second from a place in the final.

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Toumarkin, who improved his previous best by 63 hundredths of a second, ended the 100m back in 12th place earlier this week and is aiming on Thursday to emulate his achievement from the London 2012 Olympics when he finished the 200m back final in seventh place.

Gal Nevo was the last Israeli to reach a world championship final in an Olympic event six years ago, joining Yoav Bruck (1994), Eitan Urbach (1998), Vered Borochovsky (2001) and Yoav Gath (2001).

Amit Ivry continued to be plagued by the virus that has hampered her since the start of the championships on Wednesday, ending the women’s 50m back in 33rd place in a time of 29.50s, almost a second slower than her national record.

Meanwhile, Katie Ledecky’s bid to become the first swimmer to win four individual freestyle titles at a world championships remained on track as the American claimed a stunning gold in the women’s 200 meters.

After qualifying for the final in sixth on Tuesday during a punishing schedule which meant Ledecky raced her semifinal 30 minutes after winning the 1,500m freestyle gold with a world record, the 18-year-old touched first in the final in one minute 55.16 seconds.



Ledecky’s win, achieved from lane seven, added to her golds in the 400m freestyle on the opening night and the 1,500.

Sun Yang of China dug deep, also from lane seven, to win his second gold, the men’s 800m freestyle, after a thrilling battle with Italy’s Gregorio Paltrinieri.

Briton Adam Peaty continued his fine form by adding the men’s 50m breaststroke gold to his 100m breaststroke title, becoming the first swimmer to achieve the feat at a world championships.

Peaty won his third gold when he contributed to Britain’s world-record time of 3:41.71 minutes in the mixed 4x100m medley relay, a new event.

Chad Le Clos of South Africa lost his men’s 200m butterfly title to Hungary’s Laszlo Cseh in a pulsating final.

Le Clos led for the first 100 meters but the Hungarian regained the advantage by the final turn.

Although Le Clos made one final surge, Cseh did enough to post the year’s world-leading time of 1:53.48 and hold off the Olympic champion by 0.20 seconds.

Reuters contributed to this report

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