Team GB's poor swimming form continues as Daniel Fogg finishes fifth

 

Great Britain's poor Olympics in the water concluded today with just three medals after Daniel Fogg finished fifth in the open water in the Serpentine.

The 10 kilometre race was won by Tunisia's Oussama Mellouli, who took bronze in the 1,500m freestyle in the pool last week, ahead of Germany's Thomas Lurz who took silver and bronze medallist Richard Weinberger of Canada.

The 24-year-old Fogg was 15th at last year's World Championships in the boiling water off Jinshan City Beach in Shanghai.

Today in Hyde Park, Fogg was third after the first lap but at one point dropped to joint 22nd.

Sixteenth at the end of the fifth lap, the Kevin Renshaw-trained swimmer hauled himself up to a highly-respectable fifth place.

Open water is notoriously unpredictable but Fogg covered the spectrum of placings from third to 22nd in a 25-man field.

Emerging in the bronze medal position after the first lap, he dropped to equal 13th, climbed back up to sixth and then dropped 16 places.

The Loughborough ITC swimmer came out of the fifth and penultimate lap in 16th before making full use of his speed as a 1,500m freestyle swimmer to clamber to within two places of the podium.

Fogg finished in one hour 50 minutes 37.3 seconds, 42.2secs behind winner Mellouli and 37secs adrift of Canada's Weinberger in third.

Fogg, who initially had no idea where he had finished, said: "I had a really good start, I was really happy with the first lap and how it went.

"I was right on Mellouli's feet the whole way and it was extremely easy.

"If the whole race could have gone like that it would have been really nice but I think I backed off a bit in the middle.

"I think there was a breakaway which I couldn't see because I was too far back.

"It was just a matter on the last lap or two trying to take the person in front and then the person in front and then put the hammer down for the last lap.

"I am really happy with fifth, it's higher than I thought I could do."

Fogg is far smaller than many of his opponents in what can be a violent event, with kicking and punching at every turn, some of it deliberate, some of it not.

However, Fogg insisted there had been little of concern, in contrast to the women's event yesterday which Keri-anne Payne described as a "tough, violent race".

Fogg said: "I got caught up in the middle of the pack at one point but it wasn't too brutal.

"I tried to stay on the edge and swim in my own clear water.

"I didn't think it was too bad - there are only 25 guys in there rather than the 60 in the World Champs so it was going to be a bit more of a tactical race."

It concluded a highly-respectable Olympics for Fogg, whose fifth place here was preceded by his eighth in the 1,500m freestyle.

His satisfaction was also in contrast to Payne's tears yesterday after she missed the podium.

Reflecting on London 2012, Fogg concluded: "I wasn't expected to make the final in the 1500 and I did that and swam very close to my PB which I had set by 11 seconds in March.

"So performance-wise I'm extremely happy and I couldn't have expected more than to make the 1,500m final and then fifth in this is really good.

"After it has sunk in in a few days or a week's time I shall look back and analyse and plan ahead for the future."

PA

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