Each day through July 23, Swimming World’s Jeff Commings and David Rieder will offer medal predictions in the 19 swimming events on tap at the Commonwealth Games, which begins July 24 in Glasgow, Scotland. We invite you to offer your picks in our Reaction Time comments section below!
Commentary by Jeff Commings
PHOENIX, Arizona, July 13. CAMERON Van der Burgh won the 50 and 100 breaststrokes at the 2010 Commonwealth Games, and he is in danger of being unable to defend both events in Glasgow. Christian Sprenger is having a great year in the pool and is on track to take down his rival in his quest to win gold in all three breaststroke events.
Sprenger is the only swimmer who has dipped under 59 seconds this year in the 100 breast, sitting on top of the world rankings with a 58.87. The swimmers ranked second, third and fourth in the world all will race at the Commonwealth Games. Van der Burgh is the world record holder (58.46) and will be the rabbit to chase at the 50-meter mark. Adam Peaty and Ross Murdoch are both in line for medals, and it’s hard to figure which of the two will be left off the podium. Both have made great strides in this event in the past year, with Murdoch setting a Scottish record of 59.56 and Peaty breaking the British/English record with a 59.25. Murdoch has the most international experience, including a trip to last year’s world championships, so he might have the upper hand at the big meet.
Glenn Snyders of New Zealand shouldn’t be counted out, though getting under 1:00 hasn’t been an easy feat for Snyders lately. And though Michael Jamieson is going to be among the medal contenders in the 200 breast, he’s not likely to have the opening speed to contend in the 100.
Men’s 100 breast medal prediction:
Gold: Christian Sprenger, Australia
Silver: Cameron Van der Burgh, South Africa
Bronze: Ross Murdoch, Scotland
The women’s 100 breast gold medal is pretty much reserved for Alia Atkinson, who didn’t perform well at the world championships last year but is on an upswing in 2014. Until this weekend, Sophie Taylor had the fastest time among Commonwealth swimmers with her 1:07.08, but Atkinson got under 1:07 with a 1:06.86 in Orlando. Look for both to dip under 1:07, but Atkinson could go beyond that and post a 1:05.
In what is a relatively weak event for the Commonwealth, the battle for bronze is pretty much wide open. Leiston Pickett gets the nod due to her years of international experience as one of Australia’s top breaststrokers. Lorna Tonks, however, might be the spoiler in her aim to get on the 400 medley relay team.
Women’s 100 breaststroke medal prediction:
Gold: Alia Atkinson, Jamaica
Silver: Sophie Taylor, England
Bronze: Leiston Pickett, Australia
Check out our previous medal predictions by clicking the links below: