Lymperta makes history in Shanghai

Marianna Lymperta became the first Greek woman to earn a medal in the World Swimming Championships after finishing third in the 10-kilometer open water race in Shanghai on July 19.

In a particularly challenging event, which is the equivalent of the marathon race for swimming, Lymperta covered the distance in two hours, two minutes and one second, just three seconds behind the winner, Britain’s Keri-Anne Payne.

“The conditions were difficult indeed. The water was warm, but that was good for me as I am used to such conditions. I was behind at the start, but I later saw that I had the strength and stayed close to the leading group and eventually got the medal,» she stated.

Lymperta, 32, has also earned herself a ticket to the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

“I am very happy because this will be my fourth Olympics,» said Lymperta, before dedicating the medal to her family and her coach, Miltos Kanellopoulos.

Another Greek, Kelly Araouzou, finished 18th.

Earlier on July 19 the women’s national water polo team sealed its qualification to the second round of the World Championship, beating Brazil 11-8. On July 17 Greece beat Spain 10-9.

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