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Baqlah makes B qualifying time for Rio Olympics

By JT - Aug 06,2015 - Last updated at Aug 06,2015

AMMAN — Seventeen-year-old Khader Baqlah made history by becoming the first Jordanian swimmer to make the B qualifying time for the Olympic Games, according to a statement from the Jordan Olympic Committee News Service.

Baqlah was competing at the FINA World Championships in Kazan, Russia, and swam a new Jordan record of 1:51.67 in the 200m free-style.

With no Jordanian swimmer making an A time in Kazan, it means the youngster is virtually guaranteed a spot at next summer’s Rio Olympics and swimming chiefs have labelled the achievement as “massive” for the sport’s development.

Baqlah also smashed the Jordan record for the 400m free-style which he swam in 3:58.71, just 0.2 of a second from the Olympic B time. He smashed the previous record by nearly three-and-a-half seconds.

Jordan has been represented in the swimming events at previous Olympics through ‘wild card’ invitations for nations of swimmers who have not met the qualifying times.

Elsewhere in the pool, 15-year-old Mohammed Bedour set a new personal best time of 1:02.33 in the 100m backstroke.

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