Paralympic swimmer Blake Cochrane.
Paralympic swimmer Blake Cochrane. ALAN PORRITT

Cochrane settles for second after putting relay team first

SWIMMING: London 2012 gold medallist Blake Cochrane has been forced to settle for silver in the SB7 100m breaststroke in Rio.

The Sunshine Coaster finished in a time of 1min 18.66sec, six seconds behind 18-year-old Colombian Carlos Serrano Zarate, who set a new world record with his swim.

Cochrane, 25, who is competing at his third Paralympics, has been working with his coach Jan Cameron on freestyle just as much as his breaststroke in a bid to help further the Australian team's chances in the freestyle relay.

"It was the strongest race that I could put together tonight. I'm a little bit disappointed with the time, but overall over I'm happy with the result and can't do much more than that," Cochrane (pictured) said.

"The 100m breaststroke has always been a strong stroke of mine and I've put a lot of emphasis on it, but coming into this race I knew I had a tough challenge trying to get that gold medal, so what Jan Cameron and I did was try and focus a little bit more on the freestyle, considering the best chance for a gold medal is going to be the 4x100m freestyle relay team.

"We have a really strong team this year so hopefully we can defend that title, so I wanted to try and strengthen my freestyle so that I could give something back to the team."

Year 9 student Tiffany Thomas-Kane, 15, has continued her strong start in Rio by taking bronze in the women's S6 50m freestyle.

She had already won bronze in the women's S6 50m butterfly and still has her most favoured event, the 100m breaststroke, to look forward to later this week.

Matthew Haanapel finished fifth in the men's S6 50m breaststroke, while Michael Anderson finished sixth in the men's S10 100m backstroke.

In the men's SM13 200m individual medley, Sean Russo and Jacob Templeton finish sixth and eighth respectively, while Prue Watt finished eighth in the women's event.

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