World Championships: Nicolo Martinenghi Takes 100m Breaststroke Title Ahead Of Kamminga & Fink

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World Championships: Nicolo Martinenghi Takes 100m Breaststroke Title Ahead Of Kamminga & Fink

Nicolo Martinenghi won the men’s 100m breaststroke as Adam Peaty‘s bull run came to an end after injury prevented him from competing at the World Championships.

Olympic champion Peaty won in 2015, 2017 and 2019 – setting a world record of 56.88 in Gwangju three years ago – but was ruled out of Budapest 2022 after breaking his foot in training.

Martinenghi – the Olympic bronze medallist – was second behind Nic Fink of the USA at halfway but came past on the second 50 to take the title in 58.26, lowering his Italian record in the process.

Arno Kamminga – second in Tokyo – took silver in 58.62 with Fink third 0.03 adrift in 58.65.

Martinenghi said:

“I think it is 100% the mentality and not 100% of my physical shape because I don’t have 100%.

“But in this kind of competition the mentality does everything.

“It is not the same without Adam – I know – but I am happy to stay on the throne that he has got.

“Probably the best thing is that it’s my first final, my first gold medal at the worlds at the same swimming pool as my first World Championship team five years ago so that’s impressive.”

Peaty’s absence was noticeable, said the 22-year-old, who acknowledged the Briton as a driving force, a man who has taken his events by the scruff of the neck and through the timewarp.

He hopes the Olympic champion will return for the Europeans at the Foro Italico in August and said:

“Probably I’m happy to be the first guy that used this moment without him.

“I spoke with him before I come here and I said let’s come back faster because the throne needs its king!

“It’s beautiful to stay on the throne in this position.”

Kamminga added world silver to his two second places in Tokyo over 100 and 200 with the four-length race to come.

He said:

“Happy with the silver. It wasn’t the easiest week for me; we had some Covic in our team so had a  little bit of a scare at the beginning of the week but happily no Covid for me.

“But that took away some energy.

“We’ve been working really hard this season and it is what it is; Martinenghi was better today but I am extremely happy with the silver in my first worlds final.”

Fink was eighth in the 2013 which was won by Australian Christian Sprenger before Peaty’s domination began.

The three-time world short-course champion is well-placed to observe how Peaty has transformed the 100br and told Swimming World:

“It’s fun to see people break barriers like that. I’m thinking the rest of us are responding.

“Not as fast obviously but 58 lows are a lot more common now and soon I think a lot more people will be breaking the 58 barrier.

“I think it’s just the advancement of the sport and having someone like that change the game is really awesome to be a part of and really fun to watch.”

Of his longevity, Fink added:

“It takes a village I guess is the saying – it’s family, friends, coaches, teammates. They keep me loving the sport every day.

“Ten years is a long time to be doing this – they make it worth it and they help me when I am in my lows of my careers and they’re there for me when I’m on the highs.”