Swimming: 'Zombie' Adlington overcomes slow lane to take World silver

Double Olympic champion Rebecca Adlington made light of having to swim from lane one to claim the silver medal in the 400 metres freestyle at the World Championships here yesterday. The 22-year-old scraped into the final as the seventh-fastest qualifier after looking a shadow of the swimmer she has been this season in the heats. However, just as in the last World Championships in Rome where she only just made the final before finishing third, Adlington swam a controlled race to be second to Federica Pellegrini, the Italian successfully defending her crown.

While Adlington's time of 4min 04.01sec – 2.04sec behind Pellegrini – was way outside her season's best it mattered little as she held off Frenchwoman Camille Muffat by 0.05sec. Adlington said: "It was hard and the time wasn't as quick and wasn't there but I am pleased. This morning was just horrific and painful."

An outside lane means a swimmer has little indication of how the race is unfolding and is not pulled along with the fastest qualifiers in the middle lanes. Adlington admits it was like a repeat of Rome. She said: "A lane's a lane. Everyone kept saying to me, 'It did you good in '09', and I came away with a bronze and a PB [personal best]. I didn't get a PB this time but I got a silver medal so I improved, that's got to be encouraging."

Adlington put her struggles in the morning down to a combination of experimenting with her training in the cycle leading to London 2012 as well as tiredness caused by sleepless nights during the recent training camp in Osaka, which have continued since she arrived in Shanghai. "I was so tired this morning, I was like a zombie," she said. "You know when you wake up mid-dream and all day you feel crap? It's so annoying, I hate it."

The Mansfield-born swimmer believes she and her coach, Bill Furniss, have now found the formula which best suits her, 12 months out from the Olympics. "We've done all the trying and experimenting and now we fully know what we need to do next year, which is such a big thing."

Earlier, Tom Daley witnessed a masterclass by Qiu Bo as the Chinese diver succeeded him as 10-metre platform champion, with the 17-year-old Briton finishing fifth. Daley was in with a chance of a medal in the final rounds before finishing a little under 30 points adrift of Germany's Sascha Klein in third with 505.10pts. David Boudia of the United States was second on 544.25.

Qiu was a class apart, being awarded a total of 16 perfect 10s, including seven on one dive, as he scored 585.45pts. It meant the Chinese completed a clean sweep of all the diving gold medals. The result sent Daley into next year's World Series, which gives him the opportunity to face the world's best divers in the run-up to the London Olympics. He said: "I am happy with fifth place. I can go home, get more consistency, get more volume on the dives and, hopefully, be more consistent in competition."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Bookkeeper / Office Co-ordinator

£9 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This role is based within a small family run ...

Recruitment Genius: Designer - Print & Digital

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Design and marketing agenc...

Recruitment Genius: Quantity Surveyor

£46000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This property investment firm are lookin...

Recruitment Genius: Telesales / Telemarketing Executive - OTE £30k / £35k plus

£18000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company specialises provid...

Day In a Page

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor