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The start of something extraordinary

Heat goes for FINA World Cup in Tokyo

A major influx of world stars made for tougher going for the Kiwi swimmers in their second stop of the FINA/airweave World Cup series in Tokyo.

Daniel Hunter (Howick Pakuranga), using the meets as preparation towards December’s short course world championships in Canada, could not replicate his efforts from the first meet in Singapore.

Hunter, training through the meets, clocked 21.75 in heats of the 50m freestyle and 48.59s in the 100m freestyle on Tokyo, neither of which saw him make the final. He was just one spot outside the final in the 50m freestyle dominated by Ben Proud (GBR).

Teenager Bobbi Gichard (Howick Pakuranga) went almost identical times to her efforts in Singapore, timed at 1:01.05 in the 100m backstroke and 2:12.43 in the 200m backstroke, neither close to pushing into the top echelon.

The best example of the increased depth of talent in Tokyo was with Rio Olympian Emma Robinson. She went more than two seconds faster in heats of the 400m freestyle in 4:13.25 but was only 23rd fastest, and three seconds faster in the 800m in 8:34.71 to be 15th fastest.

The meet saw the return of the Hungarian Katinka Husszu, the triple Rio gold medallist and the world’s best short course female swimmer, who dominated the 200m and 400m freestyle.

The final stop of the Asian leg of the World Cup is in Hong Kong at the weekend.

CAPTION: Emma Robinson. Credit: BW Media.