Oswiecim was one of the sports arenas of the European Games Krakow-Malopolska 2023. It was here that competition in artistic swimming took place. 175 top male and female swimmers competed at the beautiful Aquatics Centre for 8 sets of European Games medals. The medal ceremonies in Oswiecim were attended by, among others, Spyros Capralos – President of the European Olympic Committees (EOC), Princess Maria-Anunciata of Liechtenstein, Vice President of the Polish Olympic Committee Otylia Jedrzejczak and Iwona Gibas from the Board of Directors of the Malopolska Region.
Artistic swimming perfectly fit the motto of the 3rd European Games Krakow-Malopolska 2023 “We are unity”. Partnership and cooperation are very important in this sport. Synchronization is also incredibly important, which we could admire during the five-day competition at the Oświęcim Aquatics Centre in eight exciting finals.
–We witnessed in Oswiecim a wonderful sports spectacle. Artistic swimming is a very spectacular discipline. We congratulate all the athletes and admire their extraordinary skills. I am very happy that Oświęcim, which has such beautiful sports traditions, has become part of the European Games Krakow-Malopolska 2023. I congratulate the organizers and local government officials. I thank and congratulate the Marshal of the Małopolska Region Witold Kozłowski, who put a lot of work and heart into making the European Games 2023, this great celebration of sports, take place in our Małopolska region. – says Iwona Gibas from the Board of the Małopolska Region.
Let’s go back to those wonderful moments again. Recall that the artistic swimmers competed in Oswiecim from June 21 to 25. In the first of the finals, after an excellent performance, the first place in the Mixed Duet Technical competition went to a couple from Italy – Minisini Giorgio and Ruggiero Lucrezia, who impressed the judges with perfect technique, elegance and synchronization of movements. Then, in the Technical Duet competition, the Austrian women clearly won. Anna-Maria Alexandri and Eirini Marina Alexandri came in first place after a blockbuster performance. Silver medal for female representatives of the Netherlands: Bregje Maria De Brouwer, Marloes L. Steenbeek. The bronze medal of the European Games sails to Greece. Sofia Malkogeorgou and Evangelia Platanioti stood on the podium.
In the third of the finals in artistic swimming in Oswiecim, the winners of the Team Free Routine Combination competition were swimmers from Israel. Second place went to Germany, and third place to a team from Turkey. The fourth of the finals held, in the Team Technical competition, also did not disappoint the expectations of fans and the entire artistic swimming community. The first place and gold of the European Games Krakow Malopolska 2023 was won by the team from Spain. Silver for the team from Italy, and the bronze medal goes to France.
In the fifth final, in the Team Acrobatic Routine competition, we saw everything that we love artistic swimming for. The warm applause after each of the performances is a clear sign that the Oświęcim and international audience appreciated the athletic effort and the wonderful artistic setting, which is an integral part of artistic swimming and – the entire European Games Krakow-Malopolska 2023. In the final battle, in the Team Acrobatic Routine, teams from Portugal, Ukraine, Israel, Hungary, France, Great Britain and Italy faced each other. The European Games gold was won in thrilling style by the French team. It was a well-deserved standing ovation! Silver for the brave team from Ukraine. The shout of “Ukraine, Ukraine” rose for a long time over the surface of the pool in Oswiecim. The bronze medal is won by the great Italian team.
Next finals. In the Duet Free Final competition, Anna-Maria Alexandri and Eirini Marina Alexandri of Austria triumphed, winning gold and the championship title of the European Games Krakow-Malopolska 2023. The silver medal was won by Maryna Aleksiiva and Vladyslava Aleksiiva of Ukraine. Third place and a bronze medal for the duo of Kate Elizabeth Shortman and Isabelle Anya Thorpe of Great Britain.
In the Mixed Duet Free competition, on the other hand, the duo from Spain was unbeatable. At first, everything seemed to indicate that the sensational Italian pair – Giorgio Minisini and Lucrezia Ruggiero – would take the gold. That was the case, until the amazing Spanish – Dennis Gonzalez Boneu and Mireia Hernandez I Luna sailed. On this day, what the Spanish duo presented was unlikely to be surpassed already. In third place were the promising representatives of Great Britain – Beatrice Lennon Crass and Ranjuo Charles Tomblin, who, by a toss of the tape, overtook the extremely nice duo from Serbia – Jelena Kontic, Ivan Martinovic.
On June 25 came the eighth Sunday final in artistic swimming. The competition during the Team Free Final crowned the sports performances in a masterful way. Seven teams met at the Oświęcim swimming pool and each of them had a chance for a medal. The first place and the title of Champions of the European Games Krakow-Malopolska 2023 was won by Spain. The silver medal for the outstanding team from Italy. Bronze medal for the team from Israel. Thus, the fifth and final day of artistic swimming at the 3rd European Games Krakow-Malopolska 2023 brought Spain its third gold in the freestyle team final. Thus, the country topped the medal table with four medals: three gold and one silver.
At the Aquatics Centre in Oswiecim we cheered on outstanding athletes from 25 countries during the Third European Games Krakow-Malopolska 2023. At the start, of course, could not miss representatives of the hosts. In this elite group, Poland was represented by the duo Nikola Leja and Svetlana Szczepanska.
Finally, let’s add that according to EOC President Spyros Capralos, the 3rd European Games Krakow-Malopolska 2023 were perfectly organized, and the hosts deserve congratulations, because hosting such an event in a dozen cities is a huge challenge. Capralos stressed that he was impressed by what he saw with the competitions taking place, pointing out, among other things, just the artistic swimming in Oswiecim. – The arenas that host the competitions are simply beautiful. – assessed the President of the Association of European Olympic Committees.