Sun Yang wins 400m free in Shenzhen

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Sun Yang of China competes during the men's 400m freestyle final of FINA Champions Swim Series 2020 in Shenzhen, south China's Guangdong province, Jan. 15, 2020. (Xinhua/Liang Xu)

Three-time Olympic champion Sun Yang won his favorite 400m freestyle in three minutes 44.07 seconds at the FINA Champions Swim Series on Wednesday.

Sun set his pace after 100m and kept the dominance to the end, beating Danas Rapsys of Lithuania into second in 3:46.62.

"That is the comfortable distance I like and the race I enjoy all the time. 3:44.07, I am happy with the time in the beginning of the year. I can be faster if I am better prepared. My 400m free remains smooth all the time, showing that my training is effective. My goal this year is to win at the Olympic Games, "said Sun, who lost to Rapsys by 0.03 in 200m freestyle on Tuesday.

Xu Jiayu claimed his second title in the men's 50m backstroke after his victory in the 100m backstroke. Liu Xiang, winner in the women's 50m back, bagged her second gold medal in the 50m freestyle in 24.04. Yang Junxuan delighted the local fans at the Shenzhen Universiade Natatorium by touching first in the women's 200m freestyle in 1:55.52.

"I got a cold after I arrived here three days ago, so I did not expect to win with a time equaling my personal best, the Asian record I set in 2018 Jakarta Asian Games," said Liu.

Andrei Minakov of Russia and Katinka Hosszu of Hungary were the most prolific winners with two golds each on Wednesday. Minakov topped the 100m butterfly in 51.73 and 100m freestyle in 48.94. Hosszu was unbeatable in 200m butterfly in 2:07.68 and 200m individual medley in 2:10.42.

So far, China has collected 9 gold medals as the biggest winner. The second leg of the FINA Champions Swim Series will move to Beijing from January 18-19. 

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