2021 CHINA NATIONAL GAMES
- Sunday, September 19th – Sunday, September 26th (swimming)
- Xi’an Olympic Sports Center Swimming and Diving Hall, Shaanxi, China
- LCM (50m)
- SwimSwam Preview
- Recap #1/Recap #2/Recap #3/Recap #4/Recap #5/Recap #6
Yesterday we saw Liu Xiang produce a top-seeded effort of 24.23 to lead the women’s 50m free semi-finals. But on the last night of competition at these 2021 China National Games, the 25-year-old busted out the swim of her life to clock a new continental record.
Getting to the wall in a mark of 23.97 tonight for the gold, Liu beat out speedster Zhang Yufei who settled for silver in 24.29 and Cheng Yuije who collected bronze in 24.41. In doing go, Liu became the first-ever Chinese woman to get under the 24-second threshold in the event, as well as the first woman ever from the Asian continent to do so.
Entering this meet, Liu held the Chinese national record at the 24.03 she posted at the 2020 FINA Champions Series. With her outing here tonight, she dropped .06 from that mark to make history with a new Asian record.
Liu was 24.61 in the 50m free event at her Chinese Olympic Trials for 3rd place, thus not racing the event individually at the Olympic Games this past summer. Instead, it was Zhang and Wu Qingfeng who tried to make it onto the podium. Zhang and Wu both tied each other with a time of 24.32 out of the semi-finals, but Zhang wound up dropping out of the swim-off.