Men’s 50m butterfly champion Yu Hexin (23.69 seconds) needed an almost superhuman lunge at the wall to overhaul Trinidad and Tobago flyer Dylan Carter (23.81), who led for most of the splash and dash. Netherland’s Mathys Goosen was third in 24.13.
“This is so big. I feel so special,” Yu said. “At a general level I’m satisfied, but I’m also not satisfied. I didn’t perform too well...my level of energy was not great.”
Meanwhile, Egypt’s Akram Ahmed made up for what he called a “disappointing” 400m freestyle fourth place on Sunday to relegate his conqueror in that race, Mykhailo Romanchuk (UKR), to silver in the men’s 800m freestyle.
“I’m so proud of myself,” Ahmed said. “In the 400m I was fourth and missed a medal by 20 hundredths of a second. For the 800m my qualifying time was 8:02 and today I swam 7:54, which is awesome.
“After finishing fourth I was a little disappointed, but I decided to put it behind me. I thought, ‘It is a new day’. And here I am, with the gold medal.”
In the women’s 50m backstroke final, Netherlands’ Maaike De Waard held off a ferocious charge from both Great Britain’s Jessica Fullalove and fastest qualifier and eventual bronze medallist Gabrielle Fa’amausili (NZL).
Fullalove has now won three silver medals at this meet and Fa’amausili will rue a race where a slow start cost her dearly.
An elated De Waard, 17, who trains 25 hours a week before and after school, says she is looking forward to a break. “It’s been a really long season and this gold medal is a great end. I didn’t expect it and this is just fantastic,” she said.