July 20 - Greece's Spyros Gianniotis revealed that he is viewing London 2012 as a homecoming event after he qualified for the Olympics by claiming a shock victory in men's 10 kilometre open water event at the FINA World Aquatics Championships in Shanghai today.
The 31-year-old upset heavy favourite Thomas Lurz of Germany, the nine-time FINA world champion.
In a stunning sprint finish, Gianniotis pulled away from Lurz to claimed victory in a time of 1:54:24.7 with the German taking second place in 1:54:27.2 and Russia's Sergey Bolshakov rounding out the top-three by finishing in a time of 1:54:31.8.
Gianniotis admitted he was delighted to win the event and that he will be very comfortable at the London 2012 Olympic open water event at The Serpentine in Hyde Park due to his family connections.
"My mother is English, so the London Olympics is like my home court," Gianniotis explained.
"I wish I can achieve good result in London.
"I did not feel comfortable in the first five kilometres but I adjusted quickly.
"Thomas followed me closely in the last 1500 metres, but I won at last.
"It's important for me."
Lurz, who won bronze at the Beijing 2008 Olympics, said: "I tried my utmost.
"Winning a slot in the London 2012 Olympics is great success to Germany."
All of the swimmers who finished in the top ten secured a place in the London 2012 Olympic open water event with America's Alex Meyer, Australia's Ky Hurst, Spain's Francisco Hervas Jodar, Belgium's Brian Ryckeman, France's Julien Sauvage, Russia's Vladimir Dyatchin and Germany's Andreas Waschburger joining the top three in gaining a sport at the Games.
Britain's top finisher was Dan Fogg who claimed 15th place which meant he has not yet secured a place at the 2012 Olympics.
However, he will have another chance next year when the remaining 15 spots for London open water event will be decided at the 2012 Olympic Marathon swim qualifier in Setubal in Portugal on June 9-10 next year.
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