On the third day of prelims at the World Championships in Doha, Nicolo Martinenghi led the first seeded heat in the 50m breaststroke with a time of 26.75. In lanes four and five, Nic Fink and Adam Peaty were side by side, with Fink having a fantastic start and quickly building a half bodylength lead over Peaty.
Fink finished first in 26.66, just ahead of Caspar Corbeau (27.11) and Peaty (27.23), but his time was slower than his first 50m breaststroke effort in the 100m final. Ilya Shymanovich, competing as a Neutral Individual Athlete, matched Fink’s time in the final prelim to lead the way into the semifinals.
Sam Williamson (26.69), Martinenghi (26.79), and Peter Stevens (26.79) were next fastest through to the semis, while Peaty qualified 12th overall in this event that marked an unpredictable and unique competition in Doha.