Sophia Batchelor (Aquagym), the bright hope for the future of
New Zealand swimming, did not disappoint at Moana Pool last
She won the senior women's 50m freestyle by a hair's breadth
from Otago's best female swimmer, Kate Godfrey (Neptune) in
28.15sec. Godfrey was timed at 28.16sec.
The win gave the Canterbury Shockwaves vital points in its
team contest against the Otago Stars.
The top eight swimmers from the Otago championships compete
against the top eight from Canterbury in the evening session.
It added spice to the evening contest and the
inter-provincial rivalry brought out the best in all events.
The two swimmers have the talent to become future
international stars for New Zealand in the pool.
Batchelor narrowly missed selection for the London Olympics
but made up for it by gaining a full swimming scholarship to
the University of Berkeley in the United States from next
She has one important task to complete before she heads to
the United States.
''I want to complete my hat trick of wins in the 100m
butterfly and the 50m backstroke at the New Zealand open
championships,'' she said.
Batchelor has written her name in the New Zealand swimming
records book a huge 107 times.
She is ranked fifth in the world in the 200m backstroke which
is one of her special events.
Godfrey has already swum a qualifying time for this year's
World University Games in Russia and was in a class of her
own when she won her specialty 200m individual medley in 2min
21.43sec last night.
Godfrey broke from the field on the breaststroke leg and came
home strongly to beat clubmate Katie Kenneally, who was
second in 2min 24.43sec, and North Canterbury's Natasha
Lloyd, 2min 25.92sec.
Lloyd proved her class when she won the 50m breaststroke in a
tight finish from Kenneally in 34.08sec. Kenneally was timed
The highlight of the girls aged 15 and 16 events came in the
50m freestyle when Aleisha Ruske (Neptune) won convincingly
in 27.76sec from Brittany Tucker (QE2), who clocked 28.11sec.
Ruske used her devastating final sprint to edge out Chelsea
Easter (Wharenui) the 200m butterfly in 2min 28.13sec. Easter
swam 2min 28.29sec.
Kurt Crosland (Neptune) pulled away from the field on the
breaststroke leg to win the senior men's 200m individual
medley in 2min 09.44sec.
Andrew Trembath (Neptune) was a convincing winner of the
men's aged 15 and 16 200m individual medley in 2min 12.64sec.
But he was beaten by Shirley Boys High School pupil Matthew
Phillips (Wharenui) in the 50m freestyle. Phillips was timed
at 25.24sec and Trembath 25.82sec.
One of the best races of the night came in the boys aged 13
and 14 200m butterfly when Satori Dobbie came with a late
rush to win in 2min 23.48sec from Oscar Pedersen (Oamaru),
It was a good night for Oamaru swimmers because Jeremy Tasker
won the senior men's 200m butterfly in 2min 10.36sec.
Molly Law (Queenstown) won the girls under 10 200m individual
medley in a personal best time of 3min 15.59sec and the 50m
freestyle in 34.84sec.