Hong Kong Olympic swimmer Siobhan Haughey had a new personal best at the Swimming World Championships Women’s 200m heats today.
Haughey qualified for the semi-finals by finishing fifth overall with a time of one minute, 56.62 seconds; she was just 0.01 seconds behind the fourth-place Emma Mckeon. Her previous best time was one minute, 56.91 seconds.
Italy’s Federica Pellegrini, the women’s 200m freestyle world record-holder, came first with a time of one minute, 56.01 seconds. American Olympic gold medallist Katie Ledecky qualified second with a time of one minute, 56.27 seconds.
While Haughey was originally seen as the dark horse candidate for the final, her performance today cemented her place as one of the top swimmers on the planet.
“People have been swimming fast since the meet started, so making the finals would be hard,” she told Young Post yesterday. “I just have to execute my details, do what I’ve been doing, and have fun with it.”
She has done just that and, incredibly, exceeded already sky-high expectations. The former St Paul’s Secondary School student became the first Hong Kong swimmer to reach the semi-finals in the modern era at the Rio Olympics last year, and intends to do her country proud again in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Haughey will complete her semi-finals races tonight and likely contend in the finals, which takes place tomorrow evening. She will then compete in the 100m heats on Thursday morning.