2022 Commonwealth Games: Day 2 Finals Preview

2022 COMMONWEALTH GAMES

  • Friday, July 29 – Wednesday, August 3, 2022
  • Birmingham, England
  • Sandwell Aquatic Center
  • Start Times
    • Prelims: 10:30 am local / 5:30 am ET
    • Finals: 7:00 pm local / 2:00 pm ET
  • LCM (50m)
  • Meet Central
  • Event Schedule
  • Entry List
  • Entries (in seed order) – h/t to Troyy
  • Live Results

On Day 1 of the 2022 Commonwealth Games, we said we had a packed first finals session. We were so young then. It’s the second night of finals in Birmingham and we’ve got an absolutely ridiculous schedule on our hands. There are 13 events on the schedule, with a whopping 10 of them being medal rounds. We have semifinals of the women’s 50 free, men’s 100 breast, and women’s 100 back. Everything else is a final, capped off by two relays at the end of the session. Buckle up.

Day 2 Finals Schedule

  • Men’s 50 Fly Final
  • Women’s 50 Breast Final
  • Women’s 50 Free Semifinals
  • Men’s 200 Free Final
  • Men’s 50 Free S13 Final
  • Women’s 50 Free S13 Final
  • Men’s 100 Breast Semifinals
  • Women’s 100 Back Semifinals
  • Men’s 400 IM Final
  • Women’s 100 Fly Final
  • Men’s 100 Back Final
  • Women’s 4×100 Free Relay Final
  • Men’s 4×100 Free Relay Final

Men’s 50 Fly

The top three men heading into the final–Ben ProudTeong Tzen Wei, and Dylan Carter–were all finalists at World Championships. It’s 2014 champion Proud who leads the way in 23.08. Proud was 22.76 in the Worlds semifinals, and is capable of getting under 23 seconds. So is Dylan Carter, who finished fourth in Budapest in 22.85, setting a Trinidad & Tobago record. With no one in the field breaking 23 seconds through the rounds, if any swimmer can do it in the final they seem almost guaranteed the win.

Teong hasn’t broken 23 seconds in his career, but he’s been 23-flat multiple times this season, coming as close as 23.03. Could this be the moment he breaks that barrier? Those three are the medal favorites, but if it’s a slower final, don’t count out Jacob Peters or Josh Liendo, who both hit 23.51 to qualify through fourth.

Women’s 50 Breast

It’s all Lara van Niekerk here in the women’s 50 breast. She’s the only woman in the field to have broken 30 seconds at this meet, resetting the Commonwealth Games record twice in the process. She’s currently sitting at 29.80, but has been as fast as 29.72 this season, which is also the Commonwealth Record. Expect the 19-year-old to make a run at both records tonight.

Her country-mate, Tatjana Shoenmaker, qualified for the final fifth in 30.94. That’s well off her best of 30.21, so we could see her make up ground in the final. She’ll be working to overcome England’s Imogen Clark and the Aussie duo of Chelsea Hodges and Jenna Strauch. Clark is comfortably holding second seed in 30.24 and after defending champion Sarah Vasey missed the final, is England’s sole hope at a medal.

Men’s 200 Free

Coming off a win in the 400 free on day 1, Elijah Winnington took the top spot for the men’s 200 free final in 1:46.87. He was about a second off his lifetime best from Worlds. That sets him up well for the final, but he’s going to have his hands full with Tom Dean and Duncan Scott, the 2020 Olympic gold and silver medalists. They’re separated by only three-hundredths, 1:47.16 for Scott and 1:47.19 for Dean.

This is Scott’s return to international competition after dealing with post-COVID training struggles and Dean is in the middle of a tough Worlds/Commonwealths/Europeans triple, so it will be interesting to see what form they both bring to the final.

Their Tokyo 4×200 free relay teammate Matt Richards seems to have found his form after being off it earlier in the season. He qualified for the final in fifth, and could be a surprise factor in the final.

Men’s 50 Free S13 Final

There are only five men in this final, and also a mix of S13 and S12 racers. However, as we’ve already seen through just one day of competition, it’s the Aussies who will once again be looking for a podium sweep. They boast three men in this final, with Braeden Jason the top seed at 24.47. Jason Templeton sits one-hundredth behind him, so we should see a tight race for gold.

The Commonwealth Games have canceled all para swimming heats, so we haven’t gotten a look at which of these athletes in the field are on form here in Birmingham–we’ll find out in the final, with the medals up for grabs.

Women’s 50 Free S13 Final

The women have a full field of eight in their 50 free S13 final, which like the men’s race also features some S12 athletes.

It’s Australia’s Katja Dedekind who comes into the final with an entry time over a second clear of the field, setting her up as the woman to beat. Behind her, it’s England’s Hannah Russell who sits second.

At the 2018 Commonwealth Games, only a women’s S9 50 freestyle was raced, so we’ll see a whole new podium here.

Men’s 400 IM

This is the back half of a brutal 200 free/400 IM double for both Duncan Scott and Matt SatesWe’ll see what they have left in the tank for this swim. None of the athletes in the field really showed their cards in prelims; New Zealand’s Lewis Clareburt qualified through first in 4:17.72. The top end talent of this field like Clareburt, Scott, and Brendon Smith has gone much faster this season than they went this morning, so it’s possible they were saving their speed for the final. If that’s the case, it means Sates has his work cut out for him if he wants a medal; in terms of lifetime bests and season bests, Sates is on the outside looking in to that top three.

Clareburt also had COVID this summer, but rebounded well in Budapest, finishing fourth in this event. He’s the 2018 bronze medalist here, and will be eager to upgrade that hardware. Smith is the Tokyo bronze medalist, and after finishing fifth at Worlds, will want to get back on the podium.

Women’s 100 Fly

It’s Emma McKeon versus Maggie MacNeil in the women’s 100 fly. In the semifinals, they both cruised to wins in their respective heats, once again both under 58 seconds. 57.49 and 57.72 isn’t anything to write home about for the Olympic medalists, but they haven’t exactly been pushed through the rounds–expect them to speed up tonight as they race next to each other.

Australia’s Brianna Throssell is holding down the third seed as the only other woman to break 58 seconds. At Worlds, she logged a lifetime best 56.96, about a second faster than she swam in the semis. While it would be surprising to see her seriously challenge McKeon and MacNeil for a top two spot, she currently looks like a lock for the bronze.

Australia and Canada both got all three of their entrants into the final; Australia looks like they’ll win the medal count–Katerine Savard and Rebecca Smith need a big drop to get involved in the medal conversation, as well as pass Alex Perkins.

Men’s 100 Back

South Africa’s Pieter Coetze is the only man who’s broken 54 seconds so far, but Brodie Williams hit a personal best of 54.00 in the semis, so he could be ready to get under that mark. Coetze withdrew from Worlds due to COVID-19 before the meet began, so he’ll be hungry to make up for that disappointment by claiming gold.

Andrew Jeffcoat and Bradley Woodward are sitting just behind Williams, at 54.01 and 54.02, respectively. That’s Woodward’s fastest swim since 2018, and along with Jeffcoat, will be in the hunt for a medal. 200 back Worlds silver medalist Luke Greenbank qualified fifth in 54.23. He’ll be more of a medal threat in the 200, but it’s certainly possible he could make things interesting. 2018 champion Mitch Larkin is running sixth; he hasn’t been on his best form this summer, so it’s unlikely he’ll defend his gold medal.

Women’s 4×100 Free Relay

With only seven nations entering the women’s 4×100 free relay, there were no heats of this event. Despite not getting a look at the relay lineups and how swimmers were faring, there isn’t really a question of who’s going to take gold. Australia has so many good options here, and with the Canadians returning only Maggie MacNeil from their Worlds relay, are essentially a lock for gold. We’ll get their line up closer to the session, but Mollie O’Callaghan notably scratched out of the 100 back in prelims, signaling that she’s all in for her individual and relay freestyle swims.

Despite carrying only MacNeil from Budapest, the Canadians sit comfortably in silver medal position; behind these top two teams, the depth drops off. However, England boasts names such as Anna HopkinFreya Anderson, and Abbie Wood, who could help England challenge Canada for silver.

Men’s 4×100 Free Relay

While Australia has the women’s 4×100 free relay all but sewn up, it’s a very different story for the men. Australia qualified over a second ahead of England, but don’t expect the English to go down without a fight in the final. Presumably, both teams will bring their big names onto this relay tonight, and with Kyle Chalmers the Aussies are an easy pick for gold, but the English are capable of playing spoiler in front of their hometown crowd. The Australians lost one of their Worlds silver medal legs in Jack Cartwright, and based on the swims this morning, it could be up to young star Flynn Southam to keep Australia’s gold medal hopes alive.

Semifinals Quick Hits

  • After a sweep of the women’s 200 free on day 1, the Australian women are at it again. Shayna Jack, Emma McKeonand Meg Harris claimed the top three spots in the 50 free out of prelims. They’ll look to retain those spots for the final on day 3. If anyone’s going to play spoiler for them, it looks like it will be Anna Hopkin, so keep an eye on her.
  • Adam Peaty was the only swimmer under a minute this morning, clocking 59.92 for the top seed in the men’s 100 breast semifinal. However, he was not as far ahead of the field as we’ve gotten used to seeing him; this is his return to competition after a foot injury. This opens the door for Sam Williamson, Zac Stubblety-Cook, and James Wilby to make this race more of a battle than it has been in a long time.
  • It’s the familiar faces of Kylie Masse and Kaylee McKeown taking the top two spots in the women’s 100 back. Masse was the only swimmer under 59 seconds this morning. Medal threat O’Callaghan scratched this event, which means that the podium has just opened up behind these top two–look for Medi Harris and Minna Atherton to set themselves up to take full advantage in the final.

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Nono
1 month ago

Aussie Lineup

Southam-Incerti-Yang-Chalmers
Wilson-Jack-MOC-Mckeon

Last edited 1 month ago by Nono
commonwombat
1 month ago

M50fly: Proud’s race to lose, Teong and Carter to fight out minor coin

W50brs: Van Niekerk’s race to lose; Clark strongly favoured for silver. Hodges could run Clark close if she tidies up her finish from semis otherwise she’s facing a fight with Strauch and/or Schoenmaker

M200fr: Coin toss between Dean and Scott; bronze looks open – maybe Winnington

M400IM: Tough call between Scott and Clareburt; favouring Clareburt due to Scott’s tough double. Bronze probably Smith

W100fly: tough one to call; narrow lean to MacNeil over McKeon, Throssell likely bronze

M100bk: possibly the weakest event on the program. Coetze for gold; hold a raffle for minors the standard is that poor

W50fr s/f: only 4 under 25 in heats and… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by commonwombat
maverick1993
1 month ago

any way to watch from the US?

Linzy
Reply to  maverick1993
1 month ago

Get a VPN, set your location to Canada and watch the replay/live on CBC

About Sophie Kaufman

Sophie Kaufman

Sophie grew up in Boston, Massachusetts, which means yes, she does root for the Bruins, but try not to hold that against her. At 9, she joined her local club team because her best friend convinced her it would be fun. Shoulder surgery ended her competitive swimming days long ago, …

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