Commonwealth Games: Brodie Williams Touches Out Bradley Woodward for 200 Back Gold; Luke Greenbank Fades to Fifth

Brodie Williams Cali Condors ISL by Mike Lewis
Brodie Williams -- Photo Courtesy: Mike Lewis/ISL

Commonwealth Games: Brodie Williams Touches Out Bradley Woodward for 200 Back Gold; Luke Greenbank Fades to Fifth

England’s Luke Greenbank has belonged among the elite 200 backstrokers in the world for the past four years, having won bronze medals in the event behind Evgeny Rylov and Ryan Murphy at the 2019 World Championships and 2021 Olympics before taking silver in the event behind Murphy at this year’s World Championships. Greenbank was the heavy favorite in the Commonwealth Games final, and he held the lead through 150 meters, but he slipped up on the last 50.

But as Greenbank faded, his countryman Brodie Williams surged through the field. Williams took the lead, and he had just enough in the tank to hold off Australia’s Bradley Woodward at the finish. Williams touched in 1:56.40, while Woodward came in just one hundredth behind at 1:56.41. Williams is the third individual male to win gold for England in swimming at the Commonwealth Games, joining previous winners Ben Proud (50 butterfly) and James Wilby (100 breaststroke). The 23-year-old from Taunton, Somerset, England, was a solid bet for a medal after he placed fourth in the event at the World Championships, but this is the first individual gold medal of his career at any international meet.

The bronze went to South Africa’s Pieter Coetzee, already the gold medalist in the 100 back (with Williams winning silver and Woodward bronze) and silver medalist in the 50 back. Coetzee was in sixth place at the final turn, but he darted home in 29.00, more than a half-second quicker than anyone else in the field.

Australia’s Mitch Larkin, the 2015 world champion in this event and the gold medalist in this event four years ago on the Gold Coast, finished just out of the medals in fourth (1:56.91), while Greenbank fell all the way to fifth (1:56.98). Greenbank holds the second-fastest time in the world this year at 1:55.16, and he swam a mark of 1:56.31 in prelims, which would have been quick enough to win gold in the final.


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