China's Sun powers to 400m freestyle gold

Sun Aug 2, 2015 3:02pm EDT
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By Rod Gilmour

KAZAN, Russia (Reuters) - China's Sun Yang defended his men's 400 meters freestyle title at the world championships on Sunday, the first of a possible four-gold sweep for the 23-year-old.

Sun, the five-times world champion, clocked three minutes 42.58 seconds to take gold as the Chinese powerhouse overtook Britain's James Guy in the closing stages.

Guy, fifth at this event in Barcelona two years ago, was ahead until the 300m mark, before a surging turn by Sun opened up a lead which he never relinquished and he won by 1.17 seconds.

Sun, however, was asked to comment on his recent doping ban.

“I don’t understand why the media pay so much attention to this,” Sun told reporters.

“Whenever the Chinese athletes get good results, they always think we have used some drugs.

“I think this is a very dirty thought. As Chinese athletes, we are training just as hard as other countries. I think it is a lack of respect.”

Sun is set to compete in three more individual events this week, the 200m, 400m and 1,500m freestyle, as well as the relays.   Continued...

Second placed James Guy of Britain, first placed Sun Yang of China and third placed Ryan Cochrane of the U.S. pose with medals after the 400m men's freestyle final at the Aquatics World Championships in Kazan, Russia, August 2, 2015.                REUTERS/Michael Dalder