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Tokyo Olympics | Dressel, McKeon leave in a blaze of glory

Superman: Caeleb Dressel joined a very exclusive club of five-gold winners at a single edition.   | Photo Credit: Reuters

Caeleb Dressel won two more titles on Sunday to end his Tokyo campaign with five golds, as Australia’s Emma McKeon became the first woman swimmer to win seven medals at a single Olympics.

Fantastic efforts

Dressel earned the title of world’s fastest swimmer with a lightning 21.07 seconds in the 50m freestyle before helping the US men shatter their own world record in the 4x100m medley relay.

McKeon was just as impressive, blasting through the 50m in 23.81s then spearheading Australia to the medley relay honours on the final day of action. It boosted her medal tally to seven — four gold and three bronze — surpassing the six won by East German Kristin Otto (1952) and American Natalie Coughlin (2008).

McKeon also matched the record for the most decorated female athlete at a single Games ever, tied with Russian gymnast Maria Gorokhovskaya (1952).

Like McKeon, Dressel took the 50-100 freestyle double, but also powered to the 100m butterfly title in world-record time, while adding 4x100m free and medley relays to thrust himself into rarified company.

He joins Americans Michael Phelps, Mark Spitz and Matt Biondi, and Otto, as the only swimmers to win five or more golds at one Games.

While the US again topped the medals table with 30, including 11 gold, second-placed Australia had 20 medals, nine of them gold.

Dressel and McKeon returned for the event-closing relays with Dressel delivering a storming butterfly leg to steer the US to a world-record 3:26.78s. That shattered US’s own global mark of 3:27.28s set at the 2009 World Championships, with Adam Peaty’s Britain taking silver ahead of Italy.

In the women’s relay, McKeon swam the fly for Australia, which came home in an Olympic-record 3:51.60s to upset two-time defending champion USA. Canada was third.

Distance double

America’s Robert Finke overcame fatigue to secure the Olympic distance double by winning the men’s 1500m gold medal to go with his 800m title.


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Printable version | Sep 18, 2021 12:04:53 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/other-sports/tokyo-olympics-dressel-mckeon-leave-in-a-blaze-of-glory/article35672150.ece

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