War-of-words with Lilly is over, says Yuliya

New Straits Times - - Sport -

BUDAPEST: Lilly King broke the women’s 50m breast­stroke world record in see­ing off ri­val Yuliya Efi­mova on Sun­day, with the Rus­sian in­sist­ing the war-of-words be­tween the pair is now over.

King clocked 29.40 sec­onds in Sun­day’s 50m fi­nal at the world cham­pi­onships, break­ing the four-year-old record, with Efi­mova tak­ing sil­ver at 0.17 back.

This was the sec­ond world record the 20-year-old King has bro­ken in Budapest af­ter also low­er­ing Ruta Meilu­tyte’s time for the 100m breast­stroke in win­ning Tues­day’s fi­nal.

The vic­tory was King’s sec­ond of week over Efi­mova, who took bronze in the 100m fi­nal but had beaten the Amer­i­can over 200m with a com­mand­ing dis­play on Fri­day when King fin­ished fourth.

King sparked a war of words at last year’s Rio de Janeiro Olympics when she branded the Rus­sian a drugs cheat af­ter Efi­mova’s 16-month ban for dop­ing, which ended in Fe­bru­ary 2015.

The Rus­sian re­sponded by say­ing King had turned Olympic swim­ming into war, but Efi­mova in­sisted peace has now bro­ken out be­tween the pair in Budapest.

“What hap­pened be­fore, in another com­pe­ti­tion, it doesn’t mat­ter now,” said Efi­mova.

“I’m re­ally happy and to­day she (King) told me she loves to race with me, be­cause it makes her race faster too and it makes it more in­ter­est­ing to watch.”

The 25-year-old Rus­sian was blunt about her dop­ing past af­ter be­ing caught tak­ing a hor­mone steroid which led to her 16-month ban.

“Some­times peo­ple make mis­takes, it’s an old ques­tion, like when you’re driv­ing and you’re speed­ing just a lit­tle bit high,” said Efi­mova.

Efi­mova said she is “not best friends, but good friends” with King and al­though the Amer­i­can was quick to clairfy, she agreed their re­la­tion­ship has im­proved on Rio. AFP

Yuliya Efi­mova

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malaysia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.