SWIM Bournemouth’s Jay Lelliott will return with at least one medal after winning silver in his first event at the World University Games in Taiwan.

But the 22-year-old from Portland said he was “devastated” after missing out on a 400m freestyle gold that he felt was within his grasp.

Lelliott arrived in Taipei as the defending champion in both the 400m and 800m freestyle after winning both in South Korea two years ago.

The Bath University graduate qualified fastest from the 400m heats in 3min 48.30sec and led the final for the first 100m before being passed by Mykhailo Romanchuk.

The Ukrainian – 1500m silver medallist at last month’s World Championships in Hungary – went on to win in 3:45.96 with Lelliott second in 3:48.88 and 2015 world junior champion Grant Shoults of the USA third (3:49.03).

Lelliott, whose bronze-winning Dorset record from the 2014 European Championships stands at 3:47.50, said: “The heat felt great but in the final I just couldn’t quite get the catch with my stroke and I struggled with it.

“I’m upset about that. I’m a bit devastated. I wanted to go quicker and felt I was capable of more.

“It’s a shame that I couldn’t quite execute it. But at the end of the day what’s happened has happened.”

Lelliott faced even tougher competition in the 1500m freestyle final, including world and Olympic champion Gregorio Paltrinieri of Italy and Hungary’s former European champion Gergely Gyurta.

Paltrinieri, Romanchuk and Gyurta won gold, silver and bronze with Lelliott improving from seventh in the heats to fifth in 15:06.51 – eight seconds outside his Dorset record from 2014, a time that would have won him bronze.

Lelliott was in the running for a second medal after qualifying third fastest for Wednesday evening’s 800m freestyle final (8:57.95), although Paltrinieri, Romanchuk and Gyurta would again be among his opponents.

• Seagulls’ Sam Small and Isaac Ellis both struck gold at the Swim Wales Summer Open Meet in Swansea.

Small qualified first for the 14yrs 100m butterfly final, then slashed 1.4sec off his time to win the gold medal in 1:04.01.

He also set PBs in several other events, winning bronze in the 50m butterfly (28.88) and 50m freestyle (26.54).

Ellis won the 13yrs 50m butterfly in 29.52, one of six PBs he set across six events.