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Spain’s Soto wins historic men’s artistic swimming gold

World Aquatics C’ships: Spain’s Soto wins historic men’s artistic swimming gold. Image Source: IANS News

Fukuoka : , July 17 (IANS) Spain’s Fernando Diaz Del Rio Soto made history on Monday as he became the first male solo event world champion in artistic swimming at the World Aquatics Championships here on Monday.

The 20-year-old Soto, the World Cup winner this year at men’s solo technical and mixed duet free events, scored 224.555 points to win the debutante solo technical event.

Male swimmers have competed in the mixed events for years but it is the first time for swimming’s world governing body FINA to introduce men’s solo events and mixed team event, the acrobatic, to the World Championships in Fukuoka.U.S. swimmer Kenneth Gaudet took silver on 216.8000 points and Kazakhstan’s Eduard Kim finished third on 216.000.

“I think it is something that only after a few days I will really understand what is happening,” said Soto of the landmark victory. “I feel so relieved and happy that the result of so much work has arrived. It is a very gratifying feeling. I’m still in shock. I cannot believe it.”

Kim is also very happy with the historic moment, saying: “I am proud I will make history for my country. All the boys are doing great performances. It is amazing to be part of this sport.”

Lian and Yang win China’s 7th diving gold

Lian Junjie and Yang Hao retained the men’s 10-meter synchronised platform title to increase China’s diving gold haul to seven at the World Aquatics Championships. Lian and Yang secured the championship with a total of 477.75 points, 38.43 ahead of Ukraine’s Oleskii Sereda and Kirill Boliukh. Mexico’s Kevin Berlin Reyes and Randal Willars Valdez took bronze with 434.16 points.

China, who swept all 13 gold medals in last year’s Budapest worlds, is on track to repeat that performance this year.

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