Published: Jul 5, 2012 12:02:17 PM Updated: Aug 12, 2012 09:24:21 AM
The 2012 Trans-Tasman tour will come down to the wire in the final sessions to be swum in Melbourne on Friday July 6 and Saturday July 7.
Australia Green held an early lead in Canberra and Wagga Wagga but the score board is closing in on them with New Zealand and Australia Gold making their move.
Australia Green hold a narrow lead with a total of 497 points and they are sitting just clear of New Zealand, on 435 and Australia Gold on 430.
Dual Australian Age Champion for 2012 Jemma Schlicht has proved she is a force to be reckoned with after taking out the 200m freestyle and the 50m butterfly skins at the final meet in Wagga Wagga.
The 15-year-old has gone from strength to strength defending her titles across the series and performing at a consistently high standard. Schlicht stopped the clock at 2:02.46 in the women’s 200m butterfly with her Australia Green teammate Brittany McEvoy just behind in 2:03.06. Rounding out the top three was Australia Gold swimmer Taylor Green (2:04.38).
With a record breaking swim yesterday, Karlene Pircher (1:11.00) still had enough in the tank to take out the women’s 100m breaststroke event. The 15-year-old scored some much need points for Australia Gold as she hit the wall just ahead of Green team’s Jenna Strauch (1:11.20) and New Zealand swimmer Emily McGill (1:11.91).
There was no stopping Edward Marks as he powered through the men’s 100m freestyle to claim victory over his Australia Green rival Mitchell Pratt (55.75) in an impressive time of 55.67. Nick Robertson took third place in 55.89. Less than half a second separated the top three finishers.
The men’s 400m IM was a fight to the finish with New Zealand swimmer Julian Layton and Australia Green’s Kazamir Boskovic (4:24.61) turning in equal first at each lap. It came down to the touch with Layton extending his last stroke and taking the victory in 4:24.48, 0.13 of a second ahead of Boskovic. Third place went to Cameron Blair also from New Zealand, in 4:28.85.
Kiwi swimmer Rima Williams came back from illness earlier in the week to take out the women’s 100m backstroke in an impressive time of 1:01.68. Williams went out fast and couldn’t be caught despite Australia Green swimmer Lauren Rettie (1:02.09) and William’s New Zealand teammate Jomari Meyer (1:02.89) putting in a good chase.
Six-time Australian Age Champion Nicholas Groenewald cruised to victory in the men’s 200m backstroke. The Australia Green swimmer hit the wall in 2:01.49, a full body-length ahead of Julian Weir from New Zealand in 2:03.12. Australia Gold swimmer Ryan Leonard picked up the points for third in 2:03.82.
The New Zealand team began their assault on the leader-board in the men’s 200m breaststroke as George Schroder (2:19.71)and Ben Walsh (2:21.06) went one-two ahead of Australia Gold swimmer Jesse King (2:22.93).
With three records to his name from the series so far and three wins from this morning’s session, Kiwi swimmer Matthew Hutchins is leaving nothing in reserve. The 17-year-old took out the men’s 100m freestyle in 50.71, ahead of Australia Green swimmers Lachlan Wells (51.38) and Alex Press (52.08).
Not long after Hutchins was back in the water for the men’s 400m freestyle where he easily took first place by over seven seconds, hitting the wall in 3:51.93. The record holder for the event beat home Australia Green swimmers Hayden Rea who took second in 3:59.17 and Jacob Hansford in 4:00.46.
Hutchins then showed his versatility winning his skins final in 23.36 after a disqualification for Alex Press.
The women’s 200m butterfly saw Alanna Bowles (2:15.44) in her element as she came into the wall for first place, over two seconds ahead of her closest rival. New Zealand Swimmer Caroline Baddock (2:17.72) split the Australian’s to take second with Chelsea Gubecka (2:18.97) rounding out the top three.
Just as Australia Green were looking in trouble on the score-board, Eliza Ham pulled out a stunning victory in the women’s 200m IM and gave her team a much needed boost. Kiwi swimmer Emily McGill was relegated to second while Australia Gold’s Meg Bailey hit the wall third in 2:18.35.
The unstoppable combination of Shayna Jack, Jemma Schlicht, Brittany McEvoy and Lucy Soden won the women’s 4x50m freestyle relay over a second clear of New Zealand A (1:45.98) in 1:44.36.
In the men’s 4x50m medley relay it was Edward Marks, Jesse King, Nick Roberston and Vincent Dai from Australia Gold A, who sealed the win in 1:44.12, leaving the New Zealand A team to settle for second with their time of 1:44.73.
Australia Green were guaranteed the points in the women’s 50m butterfly skins with butterfly queen Jemma Schlicht (27.17) beating home her Green teammate Lucy Soden (28.03) to take the skins title.
Edward Marks continued his run of success with a win in the men’s 50m butterfly skins. Marks sped to the wall to take first place in 24.77, not far off the 2006 record set by Garth Kates of 24.49. His Australia Gold teammate Nick Robertson had to settle for second in 25.11.
Thirteen-year-old Shayna Jack proved age is no barrier when she defeated her 15-year-old rival, Kiwi Naomi Smit (25.97) in the women’s 50m freestyle skins. Jack sped to the wall to finish in an impressive 25.66.
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