London 2012: Swimming Finals Night 2 – live blog, updates (4x100m Men’s Relay)
The men’s 4 x 100m freestyle relay final headlines a bumper morning of swimming from the 2012 London Olympic Games, with gold medals up for grabs across four finals. We’ll have live updates from 5.30am AEST.
Women’s 100m Butterfly Final – 4.30am AEST
United States swimmer Dana Vollmer has qualified fastest for the final by smashing Inge de Bruijn’s Olympic record of 56.61 by 0.36 seconds and the American will line up a well-deserved favourite.
After playing her part in claiming Australia’s first gold medal of the 2012 Olympic Games, Alicia Coutts will come into this one high on confidence and after posting the third-fastest qualifying time, could be one to upset Vollmer.
Chinese swimmer Lu Ying qualified second-fastest with a time of 57.07, with Scandinavian duo Sarah Sjoestroem (Sweden) and Jeanette Ottesen Gray (Denmark) also medal chances, qualifying fourth and fifth-best respectively.
Men’s 100m Breaststroke Final – 5.11am AEST
South African Cameron van den Burgh looks ideally placed to claim gold in this event after also smashing the Olympic record in his semi-final yesterday with a time of 58.83, bettering his previous best by 0.12 seconds and in an ominous sign for rivals, hinted afterwards that he could swim faster again in the final.
But longtime sparring partners Brenton Rickard and Christian Sprenger are both live chances for the event having qualified third and fourth-fastest with times of 59.50 and 59.61 respectively.
Two-time Olympic champion Kasuke Katajima’s bid to become the first man to win an Olympic swimming event on three separate occasions remains alive after the Japanese legend qualified sixth-fastest.
Women’s 400m Freestyle Final – 5.18am AEST
Frecnhwoman Camille Muffat last night qualified fastest for this event posting a time of of 4.03.29, just ahead of United States swimmer Allison Schmidt, who came in eight milliseconds slower.
Muffat’s compatriot Coralie Balmy also posted a strong time of 4.03.56 in heat four and New Zealand swimmer also may pose a threat after qualifying with a time of 4.03.63.
Defending Olympic champion Rebecca Adlington will be relying on parochial home support to get her into medal contention after posting a relatively disappointing of 4.05.75, over two seconds slower than Muffat, scraping in as the eight-placed qualifier for the final.
Men’s 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay Final – 6.00am AEST
The morning’s action concludes with one of the meet’s blue ribbon events, the men’s 4 x 100m freestyle relay final. Anchored by megastar James Magnussen and James Roberts, the Australian team will go into this event as the dominant favourite and despite a slightly patchy qualifying heat last night, are expected to win gold.
Led by Cameron McEvoy and James Roberts, the Australians began to fall off what was a strong pace set by Russia, the United States and Germany and doubts began to surface before a strong third leg from unheralded young gun Tommaso D’Orsogna set the final leg up for Magnussen, who overpowered his rivals to not only win the heat, but qualify fastest as well.
They’ll be challenged by long-standing rivals the United States, who qualified second fastest, while Russia and France also represent outside chances at upsetting the top two.
But barring a minor miracle or a major slipup from the race favourites, we should see the men equal what their female counterparts achieved on Sunday morning and win gold in the 4 x 100m freestyle relay final.