Halsall inches from a medal as Lochte takes his gold haul to four

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The Independent Online

Fran Halsall missed out on a World Championships medal by just 0.06sec when she was joint fourth in the 100m freestyle in Shanghai yesterday.

The 21-year-old from Southport was fastest qualifier but in the final was edged out by the dead-heaters Jeanette Ottesen of Denmark and Aliaksandra Herasimenia of Belarus, with the Dutchwoman Ranomi Kromowidjojo third.

Ryan Lochte took his gold medal haul in Shanghai to four when he won the 200m backstroke and helped the United States to the 4x200m freestyle relay title. The 26-year-old American had already won the 200m individual medley and 200m freestyle events.

Lochte, with 11 all told, is still way behind his compatriot Michael Phelps, who now has 24 World Championships golds having swum the first leg of the relay. However, he moved ahead of the Australian Grant Hackett and is level with another Australian, Ian Thorpe.

Halsall, who clocked 53.72sec in the final, said it "hurt" to miss out on the bronze. "I'm really disappointed but what can you do?" said the European 100m freestyle champion, who has suffered with ankle injuries this year.

"I'm lucky to be here with the year I've had, so anything is a bonus. Swimming so fast last night [in the semi-finals] is a good sign for the future. I can build on this now.

"It hurts a little to come fourth and not swim the time you want, but it will give me a lot of motivation for next year."

Britain also missed out on medals in the men's 200m breaststroke final, with Michael Jamieson fifth and his Bath training partner Andrew Willis eighth. Hungary's Daniel Gyurta won in 2min 8.41sec, with Japan's Olympic gold medallist Kosuke Kitajima having to settle for silver.

The British quartet of Ross Davenport, David Carry, Jak Scott and Robbie Renwick came sixth in the final of the 4x200m freestyle, won by the Americans. France took silver and hosts China bronze.

There was good news for Britain's Elizabeth Simmonds, who reached the final of the 200m backstroke. The 20-year-old came third in her semi-final, but the time of 2min 8.79sec put her through as eighth fastest. Melissa Franklin of the United States was the fastest qualifier.