James Guy banishes doubt to claim Commonwealth bronze

·2 min read
James Guy banishes doubt to claim Commonwealth bronze

James Guy does not usually lack confidence but he had to banish the doubts before claiming Commonwealth bronze in Birmingham.

A veteran of the British swimming scene, Guy has Olympic, world and Commonwealth titles under his belt but a poor relay split in his opening race on Saturday night was followed by a scratchy heat swim in the 200m butterfly.

That left him in lane one for the final, but he showed his trademark bravery by taking it out strong behind London 2012 champion Chad le Clos and hanging on for bronze with New Zealander Lewis Clareburt overhauling them both to win.

And while his form might not be where he would like, when it comes to racing, Guy is a born competitor.

“This morning and last night I wasn’t feeling that good in the water,” said Guy, who won silver in the men's 4x100m freestyle relay on Saturday.

“I knew it was going to be hard racing again after the World Championships a few weeks ago but what I've realised here is that the times aren't that fast, it’s how you race it. To get on the podium in the outside lane, it’s always good fun.

“There were a few doubts this morning off the heat swim but the slower you try and go in fly, the harder is it.”

Guy made his debut on the international scene back in 2013, winning his first major medal the following year at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

So it was fitting that back in home waters, he stepped back up to the mark to claim his first major medal in the 200m butterfly to rapturous support from the home crowd.

He added: “It’s really weird actually, you walk out and everyone is cheering for you. I remember being at the World Championships in Budapest a few weeks ago and (Hungary’s) Kristóf Milák, the crowd went mental for him, that was for us tonight. It was an amazing crowd and it definitely spurred me on for the last 25m.”

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