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SHANGHAI, China, July 26. IN an exciting finale, the French tied for the men's 100 back world title at the FINA World Long Course Championships.
While many had wondered which Frenchman would wind up winning the event, the duo decided to share the title as Camille Lacourt and Jeremy Stravius turned in matching 52.76s for the shared victory. The two celebrated the co-titlist honor with a high five after the finish.
"I found it very surprising to clock equal times with Jeremy," Lacourt said. "We are good friends. And it's double happiness for the French team."
That's only the second title tie ever in a world championships following Italy's Filippo Magnini and Canada's Brent Hayden shared triumph in the men's 100 free title at the 2007 Melbourne Championships.
It's not the first time two swimmers from the same country have tied at a major international competition. The first time was at the 1984 Olympics, when Americans Carrie Steinseifer and Nancy Hogshead shared the gold medal in the 100 freestyle. At the 2000 Olympics, Gary Hall Jr. and Anthony Ervin of the USA tied in the 50 freestyle.
"I can't say that I am satisfied with my time," Stravius said. "But I am satisfied with the gold medal."
Japan's Ryosuke Irie completed the podium with a bronze-winning outing of 52.98, while USA's Nick Thoman just missed out on the hardware with a 53.01.
"I remained cool-headed in the first half, and then I sped up in the last 50m," Irie said. "I think the bronze medal is satisfactory although it's a little bit disappointed. It's my first world championships so I will keep working hard and hope I can get better results."
USA's David Plummer (53.04), Great Britain's Liam Tancock (53.25), Germany's Helge Meeuw (53.28) and New Zealand's Gareth Kean (53.50) also swam in the championship eight.