Michael Phelps sets his sights on gold despite poor medal haul for USA
Tuesday 31 July 2012
Michael Phelps is aiming for gold in tonight's 200m butterfly final even though he has not yet won a medal during the London 2012 Olympics.
Talk in some quarters of the American going for seven gold medals prior to the Games was too ambitious, partly due to the fact that time has caught up with Phelps to some degree, as have many of his swimming rivals.
The reality is Phelps should have a gold around his neck from the 4x100m freestyle but the United States selectors potentially made an error in selecting Ryan Lochte for their quartet when the Floridian is far from a 100m freestyle specialist.
There are no sour grapes on Phelps’s part. He cut a relaxed figure after qualifying for the final of the 200m butterfly last night by winning his semi-final.
There has been much talk of first and lasts at what will be his final swimming championships and also about enjoying himself.
After his semi-final, he admitted he had almost been capturing the atmosphere of the occasion too readily by checking his times during the race.
“I did something that I don’t do in butterfly,” the 27-year-old said. “I tried to see what my 100m split was, which is not really like me. I knew we were all together but I wanted to swim a controlled race and swim comfortably. I was fine with that.”
Phelps’s hopes of picking up a medal in his previous event, the 400m individual medley on Saturday, were heavily diminished when he only snuck into the final as the slowest qualifier and had to start one of his flagship races in lane eight.
And after last night’s swim, he said: “I wanted to pull myself up and not be in lane eight for the final but somewhere closer to the middle.”
Phil Neville and his fellow Match of the Day pundits given warning by the BBC after 'smash them' comment
Manchester United transfer news and rumours: David De Gea could leave for FREE; £38m for Marquinhos; £37m bid for Mats Hummels;
Transfer news LIVE: Manchester United to make £37m Mats Hummels bid; Inter plan Yaya Toure move; Shola Ameobi joins Crystal Palace
Gabriel Paulista: Talented Brazilian could grow into world-class defender at Arsenal
Liverpool transfer news and rumours: Mario Balotelli's agent speaks as Brendan Rodgers swoops for German duo
- 2 Russian girl takes her own life after parents find pornography on her computer
- 4 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 5 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia