Seto holds off Kalisz to win 400 IM at swim worlds

Associated Press
Japan's Daiya Seto celebrates after winning the gold medal in the Men's 400m individual medley final at the FINA Swimming World Championships in Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2013. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)
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BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Japan's Daiya Seto held off American Chase Kalisz to win the 400-meter individual medley on the final night of swimming at the world championships Sunday.

Seto touched in 4 minutes, 8.69 seconds to take an event long dominated by U.S. stars Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte. Phelps is retired and Lochte has dropped the grueling race, at least for this season.

The 19-year-old Kalisz, who trains at Phelps' club in Baltimore, was far back after the butterfly and backstroke legs. But he began to close on the breaststroke and nearly caught Seto on a freestyle dash to the finish. He settled for silver in 4:09.22, while the bronze went to Brazil's Thiago Pereira in 4:09.48.

"I'm very excited about that," Kalisz said. "The front half isn't really my strong part, so it's just staying right there and keeping myself mentally in check, knowing that these guys are better backstroke and butterflyers than me. Breaststroke is my strong point. So it's just staying in there until that and coming home as hard as I can on freestyle."

American Tyler Clary was fourth after taking the silver behind Lochte at the 2011 worlds.

Ranomi Kromowidjojo of the Netherlands won the women's 50 freestyle, edging Australia's Cate Campbell. That was a reversal of the 100 free, won by Campbell with Kromowidjojo taking the bronze.

The winner's time was 24.05. Campbell was just 0.09 behind, while Britain's Francesca Halsall grabbed the bronze in 24.30.

Simone Manuel of the U.S. finished seventh.

Yuliya Efimova won the 50 breaststroke, getting back at the swimmer who took her world record in the semifinals. The Russian claimed gold in the non-Olympic event in 29.52, while record holder Ruta Meilutyte settled for the silver in 29.59. Jessica Hardy of the United States took the bronze in 29.80.

Camille Lacourt of France won the first race of the night, the men's 50 backstroke, another event not part of the Olympic program. The time was 24.42. American Matt Grevers tied for the silver with another Frenchman, Jeremy Stravius, in 24.54.

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