Glasgow: It was a world record that few expected to be broken any time soon. Even the Australians themselves could not quite believe it, with Melanie Schlanger the only swimmer to recognise the significance of their collective efforts at the Tollcross Swimming Centre at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games.
“World record,” she exclaimed as she looked at the screen after world 100 freestyle champion Cate Campbell touched to stop the clock at 3:30.98 seconds, eclipsing the 3:31.72 set by a flying Netherlands team five years earlier.
“Not only a world record, but a supersuits world record,” Cate Campbell said, after she anchored the team of younger sister Bronte, Schlanger and Emma McKeon to gold in the 4x400 freestyle.
The record by that Dutch team had been set in the madness that surrounded the 2009 world swimming championships in Rome, when 43 world marks were shattered — many aided by the use of polyurethane bodysuits that have since been outlawed.
Scottish sisters Kimberley and Louise Renicks landed the host nation’s first gold medals of the Commonwealth Games by claiming judo victories an hour apart on Thursday.
Kimberley, 26, was first to get her hands on a title after beating India’s Sushila Likmabam with an ippon in the 48kg weight category. Louise, 31, then followed up by overcoming England’s Kelly Edwards in a tense -52kg final.
Scotland’s Stephanie Inglis also took silver in the women’s 57kg class while compatriots John Buchanan (60kg), James Millar (66kg) and Connie Ramsay (57kg) all claimed bronzes.
Joanna Roswell added a first CWG title to Olympic team gold with a dominant ride in the 3,000m individual pursuit on Friday but England colleague Jason Kenny had to settle for silver. Roswell, who won a team pursuit gold at London 2012, beat Australian Annette Edmondson by more than three seconds with a time of three minutes 31.615 seconds.
Meanwhile, Welsh 400m hurdler Rhys Williams is out of the Commonwealth Games after being charged with an anti-doping violation, UK Anti-Doping said on Friday.
Williams, 30, who won gold at the 2012 European Championships and bronze at the Delhi Commonwealth Games in 2010, and was co-captain of the Wales squad In Glasgow, said he was “utterly devastated” at the news.
Williams failed an in-competition test at the Glasgow Grand Prix event on July 11 and has been given a mandatory provisional suspension from all competition. He said he had not knowingly taken a banned substance.