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Cookstown's Calum Bain makes real splash as Ferguson seals ideal start


Conor Ferguson

Conor Ferguson

©William Cherry / Presseye

Conor Ferguson

Cookstown's Calum Bain pulled off a superb victory in the 50m freestyle at the Irish short course championships in the Lagan Valley Leisureplex last night.

Commonwealth Games swimmer Curtis Coulter of Ards had been expected to take the title but after a tremendous battle it was Bain who topped the podium after touching in 22.96 with UCD's David Prendergast third in 23.07.

Conor Ferguson secured the first of a hat-trick of titles when he won the 200m backstroke in 1:58.30, just outside his Irish record. Ben Griffin was second in 2:01.58 and Alan Corby third in 2:02.32.

There was also gold for Paralympic gold medallist Bethany Firth in the 100m freestyle, finishing first in 56.17 with silver going to young Lisburn swimmer Rachel Bethel in 56.55.

Firth also led the Ards relay team to victory in the 400m medley event. She combined with Zoe Thompson, Emma Reid and Mary Kate McDowell to take gold in 4:17.57. UCD set a new Irish record of 3:46.12 in the men's 4x100m medley relay.

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