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The start of something extraordinary

Seventh for Hunter at World Uni Games

Counties Manukau swimmer Daniel Hunter finished seventh in the blue ribbon 100m freestyle final on the fifth day of World University Games in Korea.

Hunter, from the Howick Pakuranga club, clocked 50.05, slightly slower than his personal best 49.82s set in the semi-final.

The Auckland University student recovered from a slowish start to turn fifth in 23.75 but could not match the fast finishers coming home to finish seventh, in what Hunter says has been a rewarding experience.

“I was stoked with the swim. It was not a personal best but it was good race experience which is what a massive thing it is here. It’s an international stage so you have to step up,” Hunter said.

“I was not able to do my best tonight but I’ve got a lot of things to take away from this to work on for the upcoming season.

“It’s the third fastest time I’ve ever done so I can’t complain too much. It is a massive move up for me for the coming year, getting use to the racing style, stepping up and managing to meet my own expectations and others.”

Brazil’s Martins de Souza won in 49.98 from top qualifier John Conger (USA) 49.02 and Marco Belotti (ITA) 49.43.

Earlier Auckland’s Georgia Marris was seventh in her semi-final of the 200m freestyle, and 14th fastest overall to miss out on a spot in the final.

It was her third straight 200m freestyle, after her lead-out effort in yesterday’s final of the women’s 4x200m freestyle relay, and a 2:03.01 effort in the morning heats for the United club swimmer, who is currently at the University of Florida.

Marris went out under the target of a sub-minute first 100m but was unable to hold that pace in the back half to clock 2L02.25.

“I was a bit nervous for my first big international event and my first semi-final at this level.” Marris said.

“I tried to hang on and didn’t quite get where I was at Trials but was close to it.”

Marris has enjoyed the experience which she believes will be invaluable moving forward.

“I was really happy with my 400 for a personal best and even split that race. This is the second biggest meet behind the Olympics and an incredible experience.

“It is really good experience. Now I am looking at my first altitude training in three weeks to prepare for the season in the States. I am excited to go back and prepare for the season ahead and the Trials next year.”

Hunter is back in the pool today with Sam Perry in heats of the 50m freestyle; Natasha Lloyd in the 50m breaststroke; Helena Gasson and Samantha Lee in the 200m butterfly; Laura Quilter in the 50m freestyle; Monique King in the 800m freestyle with Ewan Jackson, Kane Radford, Michael Mincham and Perry joining for heats or the men’s 4x200m freestyle relay.

The pool competition finishes on Saturday (local time) with the 10km open water swim on Saturday.

CAPTION: Georgia Marris in action. (Credit: BW media)