6 Aug 2018

Italy aim to topple mighty Russians in battle for gold on final day of synchronised swimming

Italy's next medal mission will be to wrest gold from Russia on the final day of synchronised swimming at the 2018 European Championships on Tuesday.

Italy's next medal mission will be to wrest gold from Russia on the final day of synchronised swimming at the 2018 European Championships on Tuesday 7 August.

The Italians have secured two bronze and one silver medal over close rivals Spain in the team events, but now it is the turn of the mixed duet to go one better in one of the few events where another nation can realistically challenge the might of Russia.

World champions Georgio Minisini (ITA) and Manila Flamini (ITA) were relaxed ahead of their mixed free duet on Friday, but missed out on gold to European champion Aleksandr Maltsev (RUS) and his new partner Mayya Gurbanberdieva (RUS), so will be more determined than ever to succeed in the mixed technical duet on Tuesday morning.

Russian world champion Svetlana Kolesnichenko will be preparing to pick up two golds on Tuesday, in the free solo and in the duet free finals with 17-year-old Varvara Subbotina. Similarly Yelyzaveta Yakhno (UKR) will be looking to follow with two silvers in the same events, competing alongside Anastasiya Savchuk (UKR) in the free duet.

Kolesnichenko's potential haul of four gold medals will not be the only impressive medal collection at these championships. Yakhno has competed in seven events for Ukraine, and judging by her performances so far, is set to take home six silver medals in total, along with one gold.

Although Great Britain's emerging star Kate Shortman will not be in with a medal shot, she will be hoping to regroup for both the free duet and free solo finals after her technical solo performance on Saturday left her in tears.

Synchronised swimming will conclude on Tuesday with a gala event, allowing teams to perform routines without any of the restrictions of competition - they can use props, for example - in what will be a fun and entertaining end to the championships.