Tears of disappointment as Seebohm scores silver
Emily Seebohm, the Olympics and tears of disappointment. Sadly the three seem to travel together, although this time for the 20-year-old, the tears were accompanied by a silver memento.
I have no idea [what went wrong]. I know that I was super nervous today, and so nervous I couldn't even eat, so I'm sure that had something to do with it.
Just like in Beijing four years ago, Seebohm was reduced to tears after contesting the 100m backstroke. In China she had finished ninth and missed a place in the final. This time she was in the final as the fastest qualifier and looked set to win the gold. But somehow it wasn't to be, and she finished second to American Missy Franklin.
When she was interviewed poolside by Grant Hackett on Channel Nine she began to cry and said she felt she had let her family down. But still, an Olympic silver is an amazing achievement.
"You know I'm really happy, not that you can tell, that I got silver," she told reporters later, still wiping the tears as they rolled down her cheek. "My last Olympics I came ninth, but you know ninth is like second in a way, you're just so close but you know you just missed it.
"I have no idea [what went wrong]. I know that I was super nervous today, and so nervous I couldn't even eat, so I'm sure that had something to do with it. That's no excuse. I went in there and raced it and didn't come out on top.
"[My coach Mat Brown] just said go in there and you know you can do it and all that sort of stuff, but I feel like today I have raced it over-and-over in my head and I don't know if that made me tired. I'm not really sure what went wrong, unfortunately I got second."
What makes it even more painful for Seebohm is that the 58.23s she swam in the heat on Sunday would have been good enough to win gold. Franklin clocked 58.33s for the gold, Seebohm hit the wall in 58.68s, and Japan's Aya Terakawa took bronze in 58.83s.
"I don't know what was different about the heat to the final," Seebohm said. "I'm not 100 per cent happy with it but the end result is I'm still happy I'm on the medal dais.
Meanwhile Australia will have the fastest qualifier in Tuesday night's 200m freestyle final after Bronte Barratt booked lane four with a slick 1min.56.08s semi-final performance on Monday.
"I was kind of hoping just for a place in the final, I wasn't thinking about lanes," Barratt said. "I thought it would take a lot quicker to make the final, but I'm just relieved to have a lane tomorrow night.
"There are two girls who go a 1min.54s so obviously I'm going to have to go 1min.54s to get a medal I think. My best is a 1min.55s so definitely I think I can get that low. You never know here with times it's more about racing and getting your hand on the wall."
Australia will have two finalists in the 200m - a good sign for the 4 x 200m freestyle relay later in the program - after Kylie Palmer got through in seventh position.