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Last Updated: Wednesday, 28 March 2007, 09:36 GMT 10:36 UK
Phelps shines as records tumble
Michael Phelps (L) and Laure Manaudou
Phelps and Manaudou have produced fine displays in Melbourne
American sensation Michael Phelps was the star of the show on Wednesday as three more world records were broken at the World Championships in Melbourne.

Phelps clocked one minute, 52.09 seconds to win 200m butterfly gold, an astonishing 1.7 seconds better than the previous best which he set last month.

France's Laure Manaudou smashed the record in claiming the 200m freestyle gold after setting a time of 1:55.52.

American Leila Vaziri set a new best of 28.16 seconds in the 50m backstroke.

There have now been seven world records broken in the last two days of competition in Australia with America taking five of them.

Phelps, who set a new 200m freestyle world record on Tuesday, has now broken the 200m butterfly record on six occasions since 2001.


The previous best of 1:53.71 was set by the 21-year-old in Columbia, Missouri in February.

Phelps is chasing a record eight world titles in Melbourne and has already won his first three events.

"I surprised myself, I went so fast," he said. "It was obviously fun, you saw the expression on my face, I was shocked. To do 1.52 is just incredible.

"I'm showing I'm in solid shape now. I had a really good swim earlier in the season where I broke the world record - I wanted to take it out tonight, so I'm pretty happy."

China's Wu Peng finished second in the 200m butterfly, nearly three body lengths behind Phelps, in 1:55.13 and Russian Nikolay Skvortsov was third.

Phelps returned to the pool later on for the 200m individual medley semi-final and set the fastest qualifying time of 1:57.94.
I didn't expect to set another world record

Laure Manaudou

Manaudou of France, who won the 400m freestyle gold on Sunday, broke a record of 1:56.47 only set on Tuesday by Italian Federica Pellegrini.

The 20-year-old held off a storming finish from Annika Lurz to claim gold with the German clocking a time of 1:55.52 seconds. Pellegrini finished third.

Manaudou had entered nine events but withdrew from the 200m individual medley and 50m backstroke to conserve her energies.

"I didn't expect to set another world record but Pellegrini is a great swimmer and she will get it again next time," she said.

"With Phelps beating a world record just before, I told myself I had to do it too. Now I can only do better."

Briton Caitlin McClatchey finished seventh with a time of 1:59.28, almost two seconds off her qualifying time.

Leila Vaziri
Vaziri celebrates her gold medal

Vaziri had set the first record of the day with a storming display in the second semi-final of the 50m backstroke.

The 21-year-old had a fantastic start and managed to hold on to slice 0.03 seconds off the previous record of 28.19 set by Janine Pietsch of Germany in 2005.

Japan's Mai Nakamura was second with Pietsch in third.

"The energy in the team is incredible, you just want to go world record so bad just to be up with everybody else. It's so much fun being out there," said Vaziri.

"Records one after the other it's been awesome. It's certainly not stressful, we're having a great time."

Ukrainian world record holder Oleg Lisogor took the 50m breaststroke gold after pipping Brendan Hansen.

Oussama Mellouli won the 800m freestyle final to become Tunisia's first world swimming champion.

Poland's Przemyslaw Stanczyk was second while former world champion Grant Hackett came seventh in his first major meet since having surgery on his shoulder more than a year ago.

British double Commonwealth gold medal-winners Simon Burnett and Ross Davenport had disappointing days in the pool.

Burnett failed to make the final of the 100m freestyle after setting a time of 49.22 seconds in the semi-final. Davenport fared even worse, not even making the final 16 after clocking 49.69 in his heat.

Watch highlights action from Melbourne on BBC Two from 2320-0010

McClatchey out to add more muscle
28 Mar 07 |  Swimming
Tancock claims bronze for Britain
27 Mar 07 |  Swimming
Balfour misses out in Melbourne
27 Mar 07 |  Swimming
Hansen retains breaststroke title
26 Mar 07 |  Swimming
Phelps takes first gold at Worlds
25 Mar 07 |  Swimming
World Championships medals table
27 Mar 07 |  Swimming
Swimming world results
24 May 06 |  Swimming
Swimming calendar
17 Oct 00 |  Swimming


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