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I need focus — Coventry

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SHANGHAI — Kirsty Coventry has admitted she needs to “refocus” after missing the cut in the semi-finals of the 200m individual medley at the World Swimming Championships in Shanghai, China.

The 27-year-old Zimbabwean was a disappointing ninth with a time of 2:12,21secs. Australia’s Stephanie Rice had the best time in the semis, touching in on 2:09,65secs.

Chinese teenager Ye Shiwen, who came third in the semis, won gold in the final after clocking 2:8,90secs to beat Australia’s Alicia Coutts who claimed silver in 2:09,00Secs. Coutts came fourth in the semis with a time of 2:10,65secs.

The former world champion Ariana Kukors (United States), who was second in the semis, took bronze in 2:09,12secs.

Coventry, who won silver in the 2008 Olympics in the 200m Individual Medley (IM) with a time of 2:08,59secs, reflected on her semi-final disappointment in a message posted on Twitter.

“9th in the 200 IM. Not the time I wanted, but let’s see what the 200m backstroke and 400m IM bring,” she said.

In a later tweet, she added: “Using the next couple of days to refocus before my next race.”

Coventry’s disappointment is understandable — her time was more than three seconds out of her silver medal winning effort at the Beijing Olympics, which ironically would have won Monday’s race.

Her decision to turn her focus to the 400m IM and 200m backstroke is based on form. She holds the Olympic record in the 200m backstroke with a time of 2:05,24secs which won her gold in Beijing, and she won silver in the 400m IM.

At the 2009 World Swimming Championships — the last major event she participated in — the Zimbabwean also took gold in the 200m backstroke and silver in the 400m IM.

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