Pacific Island Records tumble in the pool

Anderson Bonapart (FSM), Carl Probert (FIJ) and Ryan Pini (PNG) all swam personal bests in their respective heats this morning to set three new national records.

Bonapart was the first swimmer off the blocks in heat 2 of the Men's 50m Freestyle - smashing his personal best and the FSM National record by nearly one-and-a-half seconds. Bonapart clocked a time of 26.75 to win his heat - bettering his old national record of 28.07. Bonapart was ranked 68 overall in the 50m Freestyle - an amazing achievemnt at an Olympic Games.

Carl Probert was the other Pacific Island Swimmer in the 50m Freestyle, finishing second in Heat 5 with a time of 23.31 - breaking the Fiji National Record and his previous personal best time by one-one hundredths of a second.

Ryan Pini of PNG finished second in heat 5 of the men's 100m Butterfly with a new personal best time and National Record of 53.26, taking nearly half a second off his previous mark of 53.73. Pini was agonisingly close to a historic semi final birth - ranking 18th. Pini needed to finish in the top 16 to make the semi finals. Nonetheless, this was a phenomenal achievement at the Olympic Games.

The only other swimmer from the Pacific Islands in action today was Dan O'Keeffe from Guam who also swam in the men's 100m Butterfly. O'Keeffe clocked a time of 57.39 in heat 2 - despite battling illness over the past few days.

Two more Pacific Island swimmers will be in action tomorrow when Tracy-Ann Route of FSM and Evelyn Otto of Palau contest the 50m freestyle.


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