Mollie O'Callaghan wins another relay medal, set for more at world swim titles


Mollie O’Callaghan has raced to her third medal of the world championships in Budapest by spearheading the Australia 4x200m freestyle relay quartet to silver.

Yet, though she couldn’t bring home the main prize on the anchor leg in Wednesday’s final, the 18-year-old star also demonstrated earlier with an amazing swim in the 100m freestyle that a second gold could soon be on its way.

Thursday also offers the scent of another gold with Zac Stubblety-Cook ready to dominate the 200m breaststroke final to complete an Olympics / world championship double.

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Their efforts helped bring a smile back to the Dolphins after Shayna Jack had earlier been forced to quit the championships after slipping and breaking her hand in a warm-up area.

For the 23-year-old, the abrupt end to her first global competition after completing a two-year doping ban left her “broken-hearted”.

Jack posted an Instagram message from the hospital, speaking of her “shock and disbelief”, confirming scans showed she had a spiral break in her fourth metacarpal.

“This was caused by a freak accident during my 100 freestyle warm up involving another swimmer,” Jack said.

“To ensure the fastest possible recovery for my hand, I will be returning home to AUS for surgery.

“Post surgery the plan is to return to my teammates in Charters, in preparation for the Commonwealth Games.”

Later, Queenslander O’Callaghan took the limelight as she attempted to top off the efforts of Madi Wilson, Leah Neale and Kiah Melverton on the previous three legs of the 4×200 by overhauling American anchor-leg swimmer Bella Sims.

But having competed a breathtaking semi-final of the 100m only an hour and a half earlier, O’Callaghan – the individual 200m silver medallist – couldn’t get near the flying Sims.

After fine work from Claire Weinstein, Leah Smith and the great Katie Ledecky, who produced a decisive third leg, Sims brought the US home in a championship record 7 minutes 41.45 seconds, well clear of Australia (7: 43.86).

Mollie O’Callaghan (bottom) could not catch the United States in the final leg, but she brought Australia home for silver in the 4x200m freestyle. (Getty Images: Maddie Meyer)

O’Callaghan, though, had earlier produced an astonishing performance in her individual semi, clocking the fastest-ever second half to a women’s race, amazingly shooting from last to first place over a landmark final length timed at 26.43sec.


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