Viktoriya Gunes Wins 5x to Lead Turkey at Islamic Solidarity Games


Viktoriya Gunes helped Turkey win the medal table, earning four individual golds, a relay gold, and an individual gold at the 2017 Islamic Solidarity Games in Baku, Azerbaijan this week.

Gunes, though well off of her lifetime bests, easily won her events. She was 1:08.72 in the 100 breast and came back at 2:27.25 for the title in the 200. In the IM’s, she went 2:15.78 to take the 200 and 4:45.18 to take the 400. Gunes also swam a 1:09.69 on Turkey’s gold medal 400 medley relay. She was edged, though, in the 50 breast– her countrymate Gulsen Samanci was 31.89 to Gunes’ 32.20.

Ekaterina Avramova took control of all three backstroke events on the women’s side for Turkey. She was 28.51 in the 50, 1:01.60 in the 100, and 2:13.52 in the 200. Avramova also contributed a 1:01.90 lead-off split on Turkey’s winning 400 medley relay.

Algeria’s Souad Cherouati had a strong showing on the women’s side, too. Cherouati swept the distance freestyles, winning the 400, 800 and 1500 free. She was 4:21.46 in the 400, 8:57.90 in the 800 (a new Algerian record), and 17:13.55 in the 1500.


In the breaststrokes, Demir Atasoy swept the 50 and 100. Going 27.63 in the 50 and 1:01.39 in the 100, Atasoy set new Turkish records in both races. Also setting a new Turkish record, in the men’s 100 fly at 52.20, was Texas A&M swimmer Turker Ayar. He went a bit slower in finals (52.75), but it was enough to earn the win.

Jordan’s Khader Baqleh took home titles in the 200 and 400 free races. Baqleh, who swims at the University of Florida, was 1:49.85 in the 200 to edge Turkish swimmer Erge Gezmis (1:50.31)– Gezmis recently committed to swim for Florida. In the 400, Baqleh won in 3:55.37, a new Jordanian record.

Maksym Shemberev of Azerbaijan swept the distance races, taking the 800 free (7:54.34) and 1500 free (15:07.29). He set new Azerbaijani records in both. On top of those wins, Shemberev took the 200 fly (1:57.72) and 400 IM (4:16.56), also breaking national records.

I Gede Sudartawa of Indonesia took home titles in the sprint backstrokes. He was 25.12 in the 50 back and then came back to win the 100 back in 55.23. Sudartawa set new Indonesian records in both races.

Other winners

  • Aleyna Ozkan, Turkey, 50 fly: 27.66, 100 fly: 1:01.43
  • Nida Ustundag, Turkey, 200 fly: 2:11.78
  • Ilknur Cakici, Turkey, 50 free: 25.93, 100 free: 56.27
  • Selen Ozbilen, Turkey, 200 free: 2:02.82
  • Ege Baser, Turkey, 200 back: 2:01.72
  • Gagarin Nathaniel, Indonesia, 200 breast: 2:17.23
  • Berk Ozkul, Turkey, 50 fly: 23.92 (NATIONAL RECORD)
  • Metin Aydin, Turkey, 200 IM: 2:02.20
  • Oussama Sahnoune, Algeria, 50 free: 22.28, 100 free: 49.15
  • In addition to the 400 medley relay, Turkey swept the remaining five relays.

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4 years ago

Baku is in Azerbaijan not in Indonesia

About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

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