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Murdoch gold but no Rio chance

By Matt McGeechan

Published 20/05/2016

Out in front: Ross Murdoch on his way to gold in the 200m breastroke final
Out in front: Ross Murdoch on his way to gold in the 200m breastroke final

Ross Murdoch showed Great Britain's embarrassment of breaststroke riches by winning 200m gold at the European Championships in an event for which he has not earned Olympic selection.

Murdoch held off a late charge from world champion Marco Koch of Germany to win gold, while there were four further medals for Britain's swimmers, who are in heavy training throughout the competition at London's Aquatics Centre.

Jazz Carlin claimed silver in the 800m freestyle, Siobhan O'Connor silver and Hannah Miley bronze in the 200m individual medley and Kathleen Dawson bronze in the 100m backstroke.

Commonwealth Games champion Murdoch took silver two years ago in Berlin behind Koch but, despite his triumph in home waters, he will not compete over 200m in August's Olympics.

Andrew Willis and Craig Benson finished ahead of Murdoch at last month's British Championships in Glasgow, which doubled up as Olympic trials.

Murdoch, selected alongside world and European champion Adam Peaty in the 100m breaststroke, clocked two minutes 8.33 seconds, with Koch 0.07secs behind, and afterwards was magnanimous about his Olympic place.

"At the minute Rio's not happening for me in the 200m breaststroke, because I failed to qualify," Murdoch said.

"That's why Britain's one of the best swimming nations in the world, because we've got the hardest qualification processes."

Carlin was defending champion over 800m but had to settle for silver in 8:23.52 behind Boglarka Kapas of Hungary, who won in 8:21.40.

Katinka Hosszu of Hungary added the 200m IM to her 400m IM win earlier in the week, clocking a championship record of 2:07.30. O'Connor, of Bath, was second in 2:09.03 and Garioch's Miley third in 2:11.84.

Ireland's Fiona Doyle placed 13th overall after the women's 200m breaststroke semi-final. Curtis Coulter of Ards was 26th overall in the 100m freestyle.

Belfast Telegraph

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