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Mayfair Pools Oceania Championships – Day 4 Wrap

New Zealand’s Commonwealth Games swimmers received the competitive racing practice they sought at the Mayfair Pools 10th Oceania Championships that finished in Auckland tonight.

Starting the night locked on 16 wins each with rivals Australia, the Kiwis won three of the last four events for the 22-20 final scoreline.

The last night of action produced some nail-biting close finishes and three further Oceania Championship records, bringing the total to 11 for the meet.

It also blooded some emerging teenage talent from both sides of the Tasman especially, while Hawaii along with the Pacific Islands teams enjoyed a share of the podium spoils.

The battle began from the first event with Australian coming from behind to edge New Zealand by 1/100th of a second in the mixed 4x100m freestyle relay, with the mixed relays an exciting new innovation.

New Zealand’s individual strength came in the 200m individual medley and 200m breaststroke. Commonwealth Games freestyle representative Tash Hind produced a dominant performance to the women’s medley 2:17.24, faster than her winning time at the recent national championships.

Waikato teenage prospect Bradlee Ashby upset top qualifier Nicholas Groenewald and in-form Jake Baggaley both of Australia to win the men’s medley in 2:04.07.

New Zealand’s Julian Layton from Hawkes Bay went wire-to-wire to win the 200m breaststroke in 2:15.44, just outside the Oceania Championship record, while national champion Abbie Johnston showed her strength in the back half of the race to edge out fellow Kiwi Beckie Dooley to win in the women’s race in 2:38.78.

The other winning effort for New Zealand came from Queensland-based Kiwi Cameron Simpson who clocked a superb 22.79 which broke the Oceania Championship mark of 22.83 set by Australian Kyle Richardson in 2012.

New Zealand also dominated the final women’s 4x100m medley relay.

Australia’s wins tonight included an Oceania Championship record to Sacha Downing in the 800m freestyle clocking 8:41.17, a third individual win for 17 year old prospect Ami Matsuo in the 50m freestyle, in her third championship record, and both the 4x100m mixed freestyle relay and men’s 4x100m medley relay, where they pipped New Zealand by 25/100ths of a second.

In the synchronised swimming New Zealand claimed top honours in the combination team event and the 15 and under solo performance.

But it was the Australians who finished ahead on the medal table taking the junior age group (15 to 18) title in the duet and solo performances and also in the 15 and under duet.

The biennial championships attracted 175 competitors from 14 nations.


Day 4 Results, A Finals:

Mixed 4x100m freestyle relay: Australia 3:32.06, 1; New Zealand 3:32.07, 2; New Caledonia 3:46.84, 3.

Women 800m freestyle: Sacha Downing (Australia)8:41.17, 1(Oceania Championship record); Moesha Johnson (Australia) 8:52.60, 2; Tiarana Mitchell (Fiji) 10:39.88

Men 200m individual medley: Bradlee Ashby (New Zealand) 2:04.07, 1; Jake Baggaley (Australia) 2:05.01, 2; Nicholas Groenewald (Australia) 2:06.71, 3.

Women 200m individual medley: Tash Hind (New Zealand) 2:17.24, 1; Helena Gasson (New Zealand) 2:19.73, 2; Lucy McJannett (Australia) 2:20.26, 3.

Men 50m freestyle: Cameron Simpson (New Zealand) 22.79, 1(Oceania Championship record); Nielsen Varoy (New Zealand)23.39, 2; Blake Jones (Australia) 23.41, 3.

Women 50m freestyle: Ami Matsuo (Australia) 25.41, 1 (Oceania Championship record); Brianna Throssell (Australia) 25.44, 2; Gabrielle Fa’amausili (New Zealand) 25.86, 3.

Men 200m breaststroke: Julian Layton (New Zealand) 2:15.44, 1; Alex Peach (New Zealand)2:18.22, 2; Jake Baggaley (Australia) 2:21.23, 3.

Women 200m breaststroke: Abbie Johnston (New Zealand) 2:38.78, 1; Beckie Dooley (New Zealand) 2:38.94, 2; Cara Jernigan (Hawaii) 2:39.63

Men 4x100m medley relay: Australia 3:43.91, 1; New Zealand 3:44.16, 2; Hawaii 3:56.68, 3.

Women 4x100m medley relay: New Zealand 4:09.51, 1; Australia 4:17.33, 2; Hawaii 4:33.42