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Great effort ... Oamaru swimmer Rhys Charles gets his bronze medal at the New Zealand short-course championships in Auckland. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

Rhys Charles set the standard for the Oamaru swimmers at the New Zealand short-course championships in Auckland last week.

Charles was the sole medallist in an Oamaru team that posted a handful of top-10 finishes and some good personal bests but found silverware elusive against the best young swimmers in the country.

In the boys 13 years grade, Charles got the meet off to a terrific start for his side with a superb swim to claim bronze in the 400m individual medley.

He roared home in a time of 5min 5.35sec, slashing 15.56sec off his previous best.

Charles followed that effort up with a 5.81sec personal best to finish 12th in the 400m freestyle, a 1.6sec personal best to finish 22nd in the 200m freestyle, and a 4.87sec personal best to finish 13th in the 200m individual medley.

He then ended the meet with two cracking swims. He leaped up the rankings to finish seventh in the 100m butterfly in a 2.44sec personal best, and went out with a bang with a whopping 9.54sec personal best to place seventh in the 200m butterfly.

Tiana Mansfield (girls 16) and Penny Keeling (girls 14) also had solid all-round meets.

Mansfield was fifth in the 100m backstroke (with a .48sec personal best) and 200m backstroke (with a 3.06sec personal best) and seventh in the 50m backstroke.

Keeling posted three top-10 finishes and four personal bests in her six events.

She had a solid 4.16sec improvement to finish sixth in the 800m freestyle, cut 2.04sec off her 200m butterfly to finish eighth, and finished ninth in the 400m individual medley in a 3.22sec personal best.

Micah Hayes (boys 15) posted personal bests in three of his four events.

He was particularly impressive in the 1500m freestyle, cutting a massive 16.31sec off his personal best to finish sixth. Hayes also cut 6.94sec off his 400m individual medley time to finish 10th, and improved his 200m freestyle time by 0.66sec.

Alice Petrie and Iessha Mansfield (both girls 14) did not manage any personal bests but both had top-10 finishes.

Petrie was sixth in the 200m butterfly and eighth in the 400m individual medley, and Iessha Mansfield was eighth in the 100m freestyle, ninth in the 200m freestyle and 10th in the 400m freestyle.

The final top-10 effort by the Oamaru team was from Mannix Fraser, who was seventh in the boys 14 400m freestyle.

Tandia Gooch (girls 17-18) had a best result of 12th in the 200m butterfly, Jaxson Macdonald-Piner (boys 16) had an impressive personal best in the 100m freestyle after a long spell out of the pool, and Molly Whittaker (girls 13) had a best of 14th in the 200m breaststroke.

Hayes and the Mansfield sisters stayed in Auckland for a couple of days for a national development squad camp.