On the third morning of the World Championships in Doha, Li Bingjie led the 200 free in the sole women’s prelim. Despite being one of the top contenders at the meet, Mollie O’Callaghan, Ariarne Titmus, and Summer McIntosh were absent from the competition.
Li was joined by Erika Fairweather in the third prelim, with Fairweather being the first New Zealander to win a world title when she took gold in the 400 free on opening night. Fairweather led Li by a second at the final turn but was overtaken by Li to take second place in 1:57.16 to 1:57.40.
Olympic silver medallist Siobhan Haughey finished fifth and just missed out on breaking her own world record pace with a time of 56.17 seconds in the fifth and final heat. Haughey will be competing in tonight’s 100m breaststroke final.
Janna van Kooten swam a personal best time of 1:59.41 to secure the 16th and final spot into the semis while Britain’s Lucy Hope narrowly missed out on qualifying for tonight’s finals with a time of 2:00 seconds. This is Li’s first time winning a medal at this level and he is determined to continue pushing himself and competing at his best throughout these championships.