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Fil-Am rules 2 swim events

LOS BAÑOS, Laguna – Filipino-American Nicole Oliva made a splashing debut in the Philippine Swimming National Championships yesterday, sweeping both her individual events in contrasting fashion at the Trace Aquatic Sports Complex here.

Oliva capped the day in a riveting three-way battle in the women’s 100-meter backstroke with Bhay Maitland Newberry and Xiandi Chua, emerging with her second gold in as many events with a time of one minute and .04.99 seconds.

She narrowly beat Chua, fresh from a five-week training camp in Xiamen, China, who took the silver (1:06.19) and bronze medvalist Newberry (1:06.24) in the meet organized by the Philippine Swimming Inc. and supported by the Philippine Olympic Committee and Philippine Sports Commission.

“I’m happy with in winning both events, although the conditions are different back in the US,” said Oliva, a rising star in the Santa Clara Swim Club, whose personal best in the event is 1:04.12, as she tried to shrug off jet lag since arriving in Manila last Tuesday.

Wacky Santos also fashioned a close triumph in the men’s 100-meter backstroke in 1:01.29, relegating Aki Carino to the silver (1:02.63) and Miguel Karlo Barlisan (1:02.64), repectively.

Oliva opened her campaign with a splash, ruling the women’s 400-meter freestyle in runaway fashion with a time of 4:29.29, nearly 10 seconds ahead of runner-up Kirsten Chloe Daos (4:39.89). Portia Drago was a distant third (4:47.24).