FINA World Championships, Synchronized Swimming: Natalia Ishchenko Reigns Supreme

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SHANGHAI, China, July 20. NATALIA Ishchenko continued to add on to her legendary career in the sport of synchronized swimming with her 14th world title at the FINA World Championships this evening.

Ishchenko collected the gold medal in the solo routine with 98.550 points, giving her a 14th title with several more potential titles by the end of the meet.

"I am happy with my performance," Ishchenko said. "Today, I made three wonderful performances (in solo preliminaries, teams preliminaries and solo final). The secret of our achievement is that we train for many hours, and our country's team is always the best. The Spanish swimmers are very good, and I'm very happy that they took second place."

In total, Ishchenko now has 14 world titles, to go along with two silvers. Her victories have come in the technical solo routine (2007, 2009, 2011), solo free (2009, 2011), technical duet (2009, 2011), duet free (2009), team (2005), technical team (2007), free team (2007, 2009) and combination free (2005, 2007).

Spain's Andrea Fuentes earned the silver medal in the solo routine with a 96.520-point tally. It is the third consecutive world championships with a Spaniard on the podium. Gemma Mengual took bronze (2007) and silver (2009) the past two championships.

"I am really happy with my performance," Fuentes said. "I am surprised that I could get the silver medal, I have already done my best."

China's Sun Wenyan gave the home crowd something to cheer about with a bronze-medal winning effort of 95.840 points.

"I felt tired in the final, but compared to this morning's qualifying session, my performance tonight is more steady, especially in the spinning part," Sun said. "I felt nervous but had no pressure. I tried my best in the final."

In preliminary action, Russia's Anastasia Davydova, Natalia Ishchenko, Elvira Khasyanova, Svetlana Kolesnichenko, Daria Korobova, Aleksandra Patskevich, Alla Shishkina and Anzhelika Timanina led team routine qualifying with 98.440 points. China (96.440), Spain (96.030) and Canada (95.280) qualified second through fourth, while the U.S. took ninth with 87.780 points.