Proud powers into 50m Freestyle final

18 Dec 2021

Ben Proud eased into the final of the Men's 50m Freestyle on day three of the World Short Course Championships in Abu Dhabi - and he will target another big swim in search of a medal on Sunday. 

The two-time Olympian qualified fastest through the morning's heats, having already played his part in a British-record-breaking effort in the Men's 4x100m Freestyle at the start of the meet. 

Going in semi-final two, Proud came back strong down the home straight to touch just behind the USA's Ryan Held and secure a good lane position for the showpiece as third fastest across the two semis. 

Ben set a new best British mark for the short-course 50m Freestyle at the recent International Swimming League final. Now, back at the World Short Course Championship at the end of a year which has included a European medal and a fifth-place finish at the Olympic Games, Proud is looking to end his 2021 on a high. 

"Coming back off the ISL, it's nice to go through the heats, semis and finals, with the different structure. Now I'm looking forward to getting my last race of 2021 in tomorrow - it should be a good, fun one!" he said.

"Short-course 50m Freestyle, there's not a lot to it - but you put it all together and hopefully it goes well. I'm not feeling too bad, I've done a lot of racing but it's fun so let's go for one last one."

The other Brits in action on Saturday competed in the heats, with City of Glasgow competitor Katie Shanahan's schedule continuing in the Women's 200m Backstroke.

The 17-year-old - a multiple European Junior champion in the summer, shortly after her maiden senior international outing at the European Championships in Budapest - placed 11th in the heats, narrowly missing out on the final by less than a second. 

Before that, Molly Renshaw showed her versatility with a swim in the Women's 100m Individual Medley. The breaststroke specialist, who trains under David Hemmings at the Loughborough National Centre, placed 22nd in the medley event as she continues to build towards the 100m Breaststroke and her favoured 200m Breaststroke at the end of the meet. 

Full results from day three can be found here, with details of what’s on and how to tune into the upcoming event live streams here.