Franklin caps worlds with sixth gold


Swimming: Missy Franklin climbed to the top of the podium one more time in Barcelona, Spain, before heading off to college.

With that step, the 18-year-old joined a very exclusive club.

Missy, we’d like to introduce you to Michael Phelps, Mark Spitz, Ian Thorpe and Kristin Otto.

She claimed her record sixth gold medal of the world championships Sunday night, swimming the leadoff leg for the Americans in the 400-meter medley relay. Franklin gave the U.S. a slight lead in the backstroke, and her teammates – Jessica Hardy, Dana Vollmer and Megan Romano – made it look easy from there.

The winning time was 3 minutes, 53.23 seconds, nearly two seconds ahead of runner-up Australia, with Russia claiming the bronze.

Franklin became the winningest female swimmer at a world meet, eclipsing the record of five wins that was shared by Tracy Caulkins, in 1978, and Libby Trickett, in 2007.

Franklin competed in eight events this week. She dropped out of the 50 backstroke after swimming in the preliminaries of the non-Olympic event, wanting to focus on more important races, and took fourth in the 100 freestyle. Otherwise, it was all gold.

• The American men celebrated what looked to be an easy victory in the 400 medley relay, only to discover that 19-year-old breaststroker Kevin Cordes, the least experienced member of the foursome, left early on the exchange between the first and second legs.

The U.S., which touched nearly 1 1/2 seconds ahead of France, was disqualified. The French moved up to take the gold, while the silver went to Australia and Japan snatched the bronze.

Chinese star Sun Yang was honored as the top male swimmer after sweeping the freestyle distance events. He closed with a victory in the 1,500, adding to his 400 and 800 titles.

In other events on the final night, Japan’s Daiya Seto held off American Chase Kalisz in the men’s 400 individual medley, Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu won the women’s 400 I.M., and Ranomi Kromowidjojo of the Netherlands took the women’s 50 freestyle.

The U.S. finished atop the swimming medals table with 13 golds and 29 overall.

Del Potro tops Isner for Citi Open title

Miscellany: Top-seeded Juan Martin del Potro beat John Isner 3-6, 6-1, 6-2 to win the Citi Open title in Washington .

On the women’s side, seventh-seeded Magdalena Rybarikova of Slovakia beat unseeded Andrea Petkovic of Germany 6-4, 7-6 (2) to win for the second straight year.

• Stosur upsets top seed: Sam Stosur won the Southern California Open in Carlsbad, Calif., beating top-seeded Victoria Azarenka 6-2, 6-3.

• Chelsea edges AC Milan: Kevin De Bruyne and Andre Schuerlle scored as Chelsea beat AC Milan 2-0 in East Rutherford, N.J., to advance to the championship game of the International Champions Cup.

Chelsea will face Real Madrid in the title match at Miami on Wednesday night. AC Milan will take on the Los Angeles Galaxy in the third-place game earlier the same night.

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