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Friday, 2 August, 2002, 18:02 GMT 19:02 UK

Thomas swims into history

Petria Thomas has become the first woman in history to win three consecutive Commonwealth Games swimming titles after taking gold in the 100m butterfly.

The Australian was in dominant form, leading from start to finish to snatch victory in a time of 58.57 seconds.

"I didn't want to get caught up in that historical thing"
Petria Thomas

The time was not quick enough to beat the Games record of 58.45s she set in the semi-finals.

South Africa's Mandy Loots was more than a second behind in second, while Canada's Jennifer Button took bronze.

Thomas' victory added to the gold she won in the 50m butterfly and joined Michael Wenden as the only swimmer ever to have won three consecutive Commonwealth titles.

And afterwards she said: "I didn't want to get caught up in that historical thing. I just went out to swim my best.

"It will probably take a while to sink in, but already it's a wonderful feeling. I want them all, but this one is a bit special."

Georgina Lee, of England, had a disappointing race, finishing just outside the medals in fourth.

She told the BBC: "I think I can go at least a second faster so that was really disappointing.

"I really thought I could do something great but the 200 is my better event and I can look forward to that."

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