KAZAN, Russia, July 14, 2013. THIS morning those expected to go through did. No major surprises. Conger, USA, and Van Swol, USA, qualified first mechanically, in their events in the 200 back (1:58.87) and the 100 fly (52.37). The women's 200 free and 50 back are shaping up to be exciting as all qualifiers were close in the prelims. There was no room for error.

And in the "quality not quantity" category, Julia Hassler, from Liechtenstein made finals in the women's 800 free qualifying 8th at 8:42.97.

Men's 200m Back

Jack Conger, USA, from Machine Aquatics, northern Virginia, USA, under coach Sue Chen, secured the top slot in the semi-finals this evening with a 1:58.87. Second was Japan's Yuki Shirai, posting a 1:59.50 and third was Hayate Matsubara, JPN, at 1:59.62. Eric Ress, FRA, the son of the legendary Colin Ress of France and Indiana University fame in the 70's advanced to semis in 5th place with a 2:00.49. Itai Chammah, ISR, moved in with a 2:02.26. Paraguay's Charles Daniel Hockin, PAR, qualified in 16th with a 2:03.45.

Canada, Italy and Japan advanced both swimmers.

Women's 200m Free
What is shaping up to be one of the most competive races of the WUGs is the women's 200 free. Caitlin McLathcy, GBR, qualified first in 2:00.32 followed by Brittany Maclean, CAN, at 2:00.69. Third seed went to Claire Turner, GBR, posting a 2:00.97. The USA's Chelsea Chenault 2:01.56 and Megan Romano 2:02.34 cruised into the semis together. Chin Yang, from Taiwan, made her first semi with a 2:01.96 and most likely we'll see her again at World's in Barcelona next week.

Men's 100m Fly
In a crowd favorite, the men's 100 fly got underway this morning. Kyler Van Swol, USA, banged the touch pad first in 52.37. In second was Evgeny Koptelov, RUS, 52.67 and third went to Coleman Allen, CAN, 52.76. Korea's Gyucheol Chang, 52.92 and Jack Conger, USA, 52.94 hit the wall in fourth and fifth. Hong Kong put Geoffrey Cheah in the semis with a 53.70 coming off the momentum of Hong Kong's womens 800 free relay upset of China.

Only about 1.10 seconds separates first from 16th in the men's 100 fly. The semis are expected to produce some fast times this evening and possibly some new national records for some of the smaller federations.

Women's 50m Back
In the 50 back Cindy Tran, USA hit the wall first, 28.59 in the sprint finish. Second was Aliaksandra Herasimenia, BLG, 28.70 and third was Mathilde Cini, FRA at 28.72. Anastasia Zueva, RUS easily qualified in fourth 28.82 and Kendyl Stewart USA, got fifth at 29.26. Hong Kong's Stephanie Au qualified in 28.89 and Laura Quilter, NZL, rounded out the qualifiers at 29.56.

Both swimmers from Poland, and Australia made it through, and in a tough break, two swimmers from Canada missed the top 16, both are reserves.

Men's 50m Breast
In the men's 50 breast Gliulio Alexandrov, RSA, from South Africa qualified first 27.72. In second was Andrea Toniato, at 27.77 and third Vladimir Morozov, RUS, put up a 27.85 just enough to get the job done in the morning. Eetu Karvonen, FIN was fourth 27.88 and Mihail Alexandrov, USA, 27.91 qualified for the second semi-final.

Women's 800m Free
Moving into the finals of the women's 800 free Martina De Memme, ITA, posted a strong 8:38.12. In second was Ashley Steenvoorden, USA, 8:39.94 and Stephanie Peacock, USA, 8:39.97 rounded out the top three. Qualifying fourth was Aurora Ponsele, ITA, 8:40.66 in fifth Savannah King, CAN, 8:40.78. Sixth Asami Chida, JPN, 8:41.25, seventh Katie Goldman, AUS, 8:41.26 and eighth place was wrapped up by Julia Hassler, LIE, 8:42.97.

Evening Finals
Evening finals resume at 1900 hours (7:00pm) local time +4:00 hours GMT / MSK (Moscow Central Time).

For more information please go to: Kazan2013.ru