Swimming: Blume wins Denmark's first swim gold since 1948

Sun Aug 14, 2016 12:45am EDT
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By Alan Baldwin

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Denmark's Pernille Blume beat the favorites to win the 50 meters freestyle in 24.07 seconds on Saturday and give her country a first Olympic swimming gold medal since 1948.

Simone Manuel of the United States, who won 100 freestyle gold in a dead-heat with Canada's Penny Oleksiak, was just 0.02 behind for silver while Aliaksandra Herasimenia of Belarus took the bronze in 24.11.

Ranomi Kromowidjojo, the 2012 Olympic champion from the Netherlands, finished sixth while Australia's Campbell sisters Cate and Bronte again failed to medal in an individual sprint.

Britain's Fran Halsall finished fourth in 24.13.

The gold was Denmark's third in swimming, and Blume's first of any color at an Olympics. The other two were won by Karen-Margrete Harup (100m backstroke) and Greta Anderson (100m freestyle) at the 1948 London Games.

But Blume was more excited about the last 48 hours.

"Its been completely unreal for me," she said.

"The gold medal means so much, but also to the team because we had such an amazing energy in the call room," she told reporters after anchoring Denmark to a bronze medal in the 4x100 medley relay about 45 minutes after the 50 freestyle.   Continued...

2016 Rio Olympics - Swimming - Final - Women's 50m Freestyle Final - Olympic Aquatics Stadium - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 13/08/2016. Pernille Blume (DEN) of Denmark reacts after winning the gold medal.   REUTERS/Dominic Ebenbichler