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

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

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Business Development Manager / Sales - OTE £45,000

£35000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is a solutions / s...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £45,000

£18000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive is required t...

Recruitment Genius: Test Development Engineer

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you inspired to bring new a...

Recruitment Genius: Trainee Motor Engineer

£14000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Day In a Page

Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific