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Danish Open: Vedaant Madhavan wins gold in 800m freestyle

The 16-year-old bettered his personal best time by 11:48 seconds to stop the clock at 8:17.28

PTI New Delhi Published 19.04.22, 01:00 AM
Vedant Madhavan

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Fast-rising Indian swimmer Vedaant Madhavan added a second medal to his kitty, a gold in the men’s 800m freestyle at the Danish Open in Copenhagen.

The 16-year-old bettered his personal best time by 11:48 seconds to stop the clock at 8:17.28, edging past local swimmer Alexander L Bjorn by 0.10 to stand atop the podium on Sunday night.


While Vedaant’s performance was good enough to fetch him a gold at the meet, it is a long way from international standards. US’s Robert Finke had won the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics in the event last year with a timing of 7:41.87, while the world record for the event stands at 7:32.12.

However, Vedaant, son of Indian actor R. Madhavan, has shown immense improvement. He has bettered his personal best times in all three events he has participated in here. He had won the silver medal in the 1,500m freestyle event on Friday before bettering his 200m freestyle time to finish 12th overall in the event.

Ace Indian swimmer Sajan Prakash finished fifth in the ‘A’ final of the men’s 100m butterfly with a timing of 54.24, while Tanish George Mathew topped the ‘C’ final by stopping the clock at 56.44.

The top eight swimmers in the heats qualify for the ‘A’ final, the next eight for the ‘B’ followed by the ‘C’ final.

The 28-year-old Prakash, who is preparing for the Commonwealth and Asian Games to be held this year, had won a gold in the 200m butterfly, his pet event, on the opening day.

“I’m picking the important meets this year. I will try to peak for the big events which are the CWG and Asian Games. I’ll be tapering for those two events. I’ll take all other meets also seriously. However, main target is CWG and Asian,” Sajan said.

“You never know how the body works but we are planning to peak in those two weeks, let’s hope for the best.”

In the women’s event, Shakthi Balakrishnan finished 34 out of 42 swimmers with a time of 2:14.27 in 200m freestyle. India now have a haul of three medals in the ongoing meet including two gold and a silver medal.

On Sunday, Mathew had finished fourth in the men’s 200m freestyle ‘A’ final. He clocked 1:51.38s, 0.19s shy of his personal best time, to finish fourth among eight swimmers. In the preliminary round, he had finished fifth with a timing of 1:52.87s to qualify for the final.

Shakthi Balakrishnan bettered her personal best time to finish seventh in the ‘A’ final of the women’s 200m butterfly with a timing of 2:23:08s.

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