Tom Dean wasn’t sure whether he could make it to the Tokyo Olympics six months ago. Covid affected the preparations of every athlete for the upcoming Games, but Dean was hit the hardest of them all. He first caught the virus last September and again during the new year. He believes that he is the only Olympian to have caught it twice. He informed BookiePro reporters that the second time was worse than the first time, making him ill for 10 days.
Dean was stuck indoors due to isolation and wasn’t able to train for almost a month. He effectively lost seven weeks of training during the winter. During those weeks of self-isolation, Tokyo seemed much further away than a 12-hour flight. And now, he is the first Olympic champion from Great Britain in the men’s 200m freestyle. An accomplishment that hasn’t been made since 1908. He claimed gold in 1m 44.22 seconds, and his teammate and friend Duncan Scott was only a fingertip behind him, claiming silver in 1m 44.26 seconds. This is the first time Great Britain has claimed a one-two in swimming in 113 years.
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The Dean-Scott Friendship
Scott and Dean have been sharing an apartment within the athlete’s village and get on very well. They enjoy watching films together and playing cards. They are friends outside the swimming pool but remain competitors while swimming for glory. Even though Scott tried his best, he was unable to hide his disappointment when he finished second. Scott was the fastest swimmer in the world coming into the race but was unable to push himself hard enough to claim gold.
Dead found inspiration during the race as he was in the inside lane of Hwang Sun-woo, the swimmer from South Korea, who raced through the first 100m in record time before fading in the final 50m. Scott’s disappointment after the race was also altered by his friendship with Tom Dean along with the knowledge of what his teammate went through the last couple of months.
At the last turn, Dean found himself in third place while Scott was in fifth position. However, by the time they reached the final 25m, everyone could see that the race was between the two swimmers from Great Britain. Both swimmers will have another opportunity to be on the podium during the 4x200m relay. They have been favorites to win it for Great Britain, even before the two set their personal bests during the individual final. Scott also has an opportunity to reach the podium during the 200m individual medley.
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