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promsing start for britain at ejc

Britain’s European Junior Championships squad picked up the baton from their Youth Olympic Counterparts with an encouraging performance on the first day of competition in Budapest. Led by Hannah Miley in the 400IM, the team collected one silver and three bronze medals and qualified a host of swimmer for tomorrow nights finals with a host of personal best performances.
Garioch swimmer Miley had qualified well for the final of the longer medley event and swam strongly throughout the race to post a personal best time of 4:47.47, finishing just over a second behind eventual winner, Hungarian Katinka Hosszu, who posted a time of 4:45.88 for the gold medal. “Coming into the meet I didn’t expect to medal at all.” an excited Miley said afterwards ” This meet is my first international break and to win a medal for my country means so much”.
There was further medal success in the medley events for Welshman Tom Haffield who smashed his own personal best on his way to bronze in the boys event. Haffield time of 4:21.75 lowered the best he had set in qualification and was considerably faster than he had expected “I thought I might go a 4:23 “he said ” so I’m over the moon. I’ve been working a lot on my strokes with my coach and it’s paid off.”. Teammate Lewis Smith also made the final finishing in 6th place in a personal best of 4:28.68, again his second improvement of the day.
In the girls 200m butterfly Jessica Dickons bounced back from a disappointing heats swim to claim the bronze medal in 2:12.28, holding off teammate Jemma Lowe who placed fourth in 2:13.57.
The final medal of the day for Britain was taken by the girls 4x200m freestyle relay. Led off by Fran Halsall, who had earlier qualified fastest for the individual 100m freestyle final, the team of Halsall, Jazmin Carlin, Natalie Durant and Rachael George built a slender lead at the half way stage but were reeled in by the powerful German and Hungarian teams over the latter half. Anchor swimmer George was never troubled by the fourth placed Russian squad but was just touched out by the Hungarian Zsuzsanna Jakabos as the team posted 8:15.46 to Hungary’s 8:15.22. Germany were well clear in gold medal position posting 8:14.60.