London 2012 / Swimming / Disappointment in the pool
Israeli swimmers failed to make a splash on the first day of competition in the pool at the London Olympics on Saturday.
LONDON - Israeli swimmers failed to make a splash on the first day of competition in the pool at the London Olympics on Saturday. Gal Nevo, Amit Ivri and Omri Ganiel all failed to make it beyond the heats of their respective events, though all recorded times that were far from disappointing.
Nevo, competing in the men's 400-meter individual relay, finished his heat in third place - 10th overall - in a time of 4:17.77 minutes. While his time was well outside the Israeli record, it was still the best that Nevo has recorded without a water-repellant swimsuit. It was also, unfortunately, too slow to give him a top-eight finish and a place in the final.
"I'm a little disappointed, but all in all I had a good heat," Nevo said. "The atmosphere was incredible and I put in a decent performance, but I was hoping for more."
Nevo, who will compete tomorrow in the heats of the 200m butterfly and the 200m individual medley on Wednesday, promised that he would "give everything I've got" in his next races. "The pressure at the Olympics is indescribable, and the level of competition is superb," he said. "To finish 10th in the world is very pleasing."
Amit Ivri, who was competing in the Women's 100m butterfly, came agonizingly close to a place in the semifinal. The European Championships silver medalist came home in a time of 58.78 seconds - just 0.04 seconds away from Kristel Vourna of Greece, who snagged the 16th and final place in the semifinal. In the end, Ivri finished 18th out of 42 competitors.
"Obviously, to miss out on the semifinal by such a small margin is disappointing," she said, "but I'm in the 200m freestyle as well, so I hope to do even better."
For Imri Ganiel, however, elimination from the men's 100m breaststroke brings the Olympics to a premature end. Ganiel finished his heat in a time of 1:02.07, over a minute slower than the last of the 16 qualifiers for the semifinal.