Zhang Yufei Posts Swift 100 Fly at Chinese National Swimming Championships

Zhang Yufei swam a 57.8 in the 100 fly at Chinese Nationals. Photo Courtesy: Xinhua/Youth Olympic Games

The 2019 Chinese National Swimming Championships continued on Friday from Anshan City as the Chinese Swimming Federation is simulating an eight day meet with morning finals to get the athletes prepared for the same conditions at the 2020 Olympic Games.

Many of China’s best swimmers are in attendance at the meet but the competition is notably missing Sun Yang, who is due to attend a Court of Arbitration for Sport next month after a challenge from the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to a FINA Doping Panel decision to issue the swimmer with a severe caution but let him go penalty free after a contested visit by out-of-competition testers ended in acrimony.

Women’s 100 Fly

Zhang Yufei won the 100 fly with a 57.82 as she was slightly off her season best of 57.41 from the FINA World Cup in China after the World Championships. She was faster here than what she swam at Worlds when she was a 57.9 and didn’t make it out of the semi finals. Zhang is more known as a 200 butterflyer where she won the bronze at the 2015 Worlds in the event, but she did not make it out of the heats at the Worlds this past summer.

Zhang won ahead of Wang Yichun (58.62) and Chen Xinyi (58.73), who appears to be back after serving a suspension for failing a drug test during the Olympics.

Men’s 100 Breast

Wang Lizhuo won the 100 breast final with a 1:00.03 as he took advantage of the fact World Championships bronze medalist Yan Zibei pulled out of the meet. Wang was China’s second breaststroker at the World Championships but did not make it out of the semi finals after a 59.7 placed him 15th. He won the final here in Anshan City ahead of Zhang Ruixuan (1:01.14) and Shen Hao (1:01.46).

Women’s 400 Free

Wang Jianjiahe also did not have one of her chief rivals in the 400 free final as Li Bingjie pulled out of the meet as well. Wang was the champion in the 400 free with a 4:08.35 as she won ahead of Zhang Ke (4:09.79) and Bi Wenxin (4:10.57). Wang and Li were China’s representatives in this event at the World Championships where Wang was fifth in this event with a 4:03 while Li just missed the final in ninth place. Wang, just 17, was the bronze medal winner in the 1500 free at World Championships and is one of China’s medal favorites for the 2020 Olympic Games.

Semi Finals Wrap

Ji Xinjie is on top of the 200 free finalists with his 1:47.64 from the semi finals as he will not have to race Sun Yang in the final. Yu Jingyao is leading the women’s 100 breast field with a 1:08.43 while Li Guangyuan (54.55) and Wang Xueer (1:00.10) are the top seeds in the respective 100 back finals.