The Gwanhju Swimming World Cup kicked off like the Budapest World Cup in 2017. With Ona Carbonell opening a gap with a silver used to inaugurate the Spanish medal table and relieve the tension of uncertainty. They are times of doubt in the Spanish swimming and the performance of the veterans is more necessary than ever. If the balance of the 2017 World Cups indicated the obvious wear and tear of a team that was supported by its experts - two synchronized Ona silvers, three Mireia medals in online swimming and one silver from the women's water polo team - in Korea the weight of the expedition continues to fall on the same women, more heroines than ever with the passage of time.
At 29, Ona Carbonell won her 23rd medal, the title that places her as the most decorated woman in the history of the FINA World Championships in all disciplines, and the third most decorated swimmer after Michael Phelps (33) and Ryan Lochte (27)
He caught the money with art and daring because he performed the first choreography of a speech in a great competition of synchronized swimming. Following the innovative tradition of Spain in this sport, the staging was unusual. No love songs, no folk romances, no fire car epic. The project practically eliminated the musical element. The words of a Mandela lecture marked the times, the rhythmic lines, the drama and the harmonies of the pre-established routine of technical figures whose execution is the basis of that discipline. Barely tied with percussion instruments and female choruses, the scaffolding of the exercise was sustained by the sound of the African leader's voice and the magical presence of the swimmer in the water. Nobody flows with the flexibility of the Spanish, as adapted to the aquatic environment as an amphibian.
Excerpts from Mandela's speech at the Laureus awards gala in 2000, accompanied the execution of Ona Carbonell in the succession of espagats, ringlets, barracudas and cranes with more plasticity than verve: "Sport has the power to create hope where once there was only despair ... "
The deployment impressed the judges, who awarded him 92,000 points. He needed them to overcome the young Japanese Yukiko Inui, who does not stop growing. Japan has redoubled efforts to raise the level of its artistic swimming team on its way to the Tokyo Games and the display of the small Inui was an exhibition. The 92,308 points that the panel judged put Ona Carbonell in a serious bind, forced to raise the valuation of its exercise with respect to the previous session. In the fight for the silver, the answer of the Spanish says a lot of his experience to overcome a situation limit with the aplomb of who is in his sauce.
"I'm very happy," he said, after getting off the podium touched by fish jelly, and adding without giving the figure. "With this I have 21 world medals (sum 23)! The truth is that I do not believe it. After a year (he took a sabbatical year in 2018) trying to take care of my body and my mind, he was just a slightly delayed goal. This year we focus more on team and duo exercises because they are the Olympic routines. I do not believe this world silver. I think Mandela, from wherever he is, has helped me. Innovating has been risky but we have succeeded. "
If the silver dispute was settled in the predictable struggle between Spain and Japan, gold never ceased to have an owner. The great Svetlana Kolesnichenko added another world cup for Russia, a prepotent empire of artistic swimming since the 2000 Sydney Games. Kolesnichenko scored 95,002 points after rummaging the pool like a cyclone to the beat of Survivor, theme of the movie Tomb Rider.