BEN PROUD produced a sensational swim in the semi-finals of the men’s 50m freestyle on Wednesday night at the European Championships in Glasgow.
Proud stormed to victory in his heat in a new championship, British and Commonwealth record time of 21.11 seconds.
That was not only the fastest time in the world this year, but also the quickest ever achieved in a textile suit.
What was more impressive is that Proud glided into to finish. Up until the 45-metre mark he was on course for Cesar Cielo Filho’s nine-year-old world record of 20.91.
“I am happy with that as it’s a personal best,” said Proud afterwards.
“It felt good. It was a semi-final swim so it was very relaxed. Yeah, 21.11 is a great time, but there’s one of two things I want to fix. However, the final is all about medals. I will come back tomorrow night and just see what’s there.”
Fellow Plymouth Leander swimmer Tom Fannon was also in the same semi-final at Proud.
Fannon had booked his place in the semis with a 22.26 second heat swim in the morning. He improved on that in the evening, clocking 22.14 second, but it was not enough to reach a strong final, with six swimmers going under 22 seconds.
Meanwhile, former Plymouth College swimmer Ruta Meilutyte won her semi-final in the women’s 50m breaststroke. That final will take place on Thursday.
Plymouth’s Matthew Dixon and David King will also be in European Championship action on Thursday.
Dixon will compete in the men’s platform synchro final with Noah Williams in Edinburgh, while King will compete in the 110m hurdles heats in Berlin.