Main chance for Glasgow grabbed by teen

IAN ANDERSON
Last updated 05:00 11/04/2014

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Corey Main didn't want to leave qualifying for the Commonwealth Games until the last minute.

So the 19-year-old Aucklander grabbed his chance at the earliest opportunity by going under the Games selection mark in his 100m backstroke heat at the New Zealand Open swimming champs in Henderson yesterday morning.

That should ensure Main is part of the New Zealand team named for Glasgow after the fourth and final night of the meet tonight.

To qualify, Main needed to go quicker than 54.63 seconds and did so with 0.16s to spare.

He'd earlier missed out on qualifying for his specialist event, so was delighted with his achievement in the shorter race.

"The 200m back is my main event, so it's kinda good to get in for the event that you don't train as much for," Main said.

Main capped off a memorable day by winning gold in the final in 54.81s, but silver was a bitter pill for Kurt Crosland. The 29-year-old from Dunedin was pipped by Main by 0.07s, also leaving him agonisingly short of the Games qualifying mark.

The final of the men's 200m freestyle produced a tremendous four-way finish that ensured the top quartet went under the qualifying mark to produce a 4x200m relay team for Glasgow.

Australian-based North Shore swimmer Mitchell Donaldson grabbed gold in 1:48.80, just heading home Dylan Dunlop-Barrett, Matthew Stanley and Steven Kent. Matamata's Stanley has already qualified individually in the 400m freestyle.

Sophie Pascoe has made a habit of breaking world records in her Para category and did it again last night, swimming 31.62s in her 50m backstroke event. The Christchurch swimmer will contest two events at Glasgow, while Te Awamutu Swim Club's Nikita Howarth recorded a qualifying time in the S7 category during her 100m freestyle heat.

Glenn Snyders recorded the third-fastest time in the world this year in winning the 50m breaststroke final in 27.38s, while the women's 50m backstroke final was won by 14-year-old Bobbi Gichard from Napier.

ian.anderson@fairfaxmedia.co.nz

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