Gisborne swimmer claims open water title in Fiji

Gisborne swimmer Matthew Scott has won the 5km Open Water title in an exciting encounter at the Oceania Championships in Fiji.

The 18 year old from the Enterprise club edged out Australian Lachlan Colquhoun in a photo finish to claim the men’s honours.

The 5km Open Water swim completed the week-long championships that comprised nine nations from the region.

Scott, who was fourth in the 10km event at the start of the week, won in 1:01.29.20s to pip the Australian by just 0.3 seconds in the sprint finish after they cleared out from the rest of the field.

Wes Roberts from the Cook Islands was third with Taranaki-based Troy Balvert (AquaBladz) fourth, after finishing third in the 10km event, while Australia’s 10km winner Jack Brazier was fifth.

Australia’s Alessandra Colombina stamped her class on the competition to score the double. After winning the 10km event by 40 seconds, she clocked 1:07.18 to be 20 seconds clear of compatriot and 10km silver medallist Biana Crisp in the 5km race.

North Shore’s Jacey Cropp, who competed in the pool competition, finished third in 1:09.10 ahead of Waikato’s Claudia Ashby (Fairfield) and Canterbury’s Sammy Winward (Aquagym).

New Zealand led the medal haul 51 medals including 23 gold medals in the pool along with one gold and four medals in Open Water while Australia earned 16 gold medals and 43 in the pool plus three golds and four medals in Open Water.

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