England powerhouse Adam Peaty extended his remarkable 100 metres breaststroke winning streak as Chad le Clos claimed a historic third consecutive butterfly title at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games on Saturday.
Peaty, 23, the Olympic, world and European champion, completed a four-year unbeaten cycle in his signature event but was critical of his performance in the outdoor Gold Coast pool.
Elsewhere on the third night of swimming, Canada’s world record-holder Kylie Masse won a thrilling 100m backstroke final, Australia’s Cate Campbell clocked another record in winning the 50m free, South African Tatjana Schoenmaker captured the 200m breaststroke and Australia won the women’s 4x200m freestyle relay in a Games record.
Perfectionist Peaty found fault, saying he wasn’t in control of his race.
“I won but even though it’s a gold medal, four years undefeated and it completed the circle, I’m not happy with that performance because it’s not the best version of me,” Peaty said.
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“It was the first time ever where I felt not in control of my race and I let the event get to me too much, thinking about the end result instead of the process. I feel it’s the pressure I add on myself.”
World record-holder Peaty’s time of 58.84secs was outside the Games record he set in the semi-finals.
The all-action Englishman, who shattered his own world record with 57.13sec in winning Olympic gold at Rio two years ago, remains unconquered in the 100m breaststroke since storming to gold at Glasgow four years ago.
Team-mate James Wilby, who won the 200m breaststroke gold on Thursday, finished strongly for second in 59.43secs, with South Africa’s former world record-holder Cameron van der Burgh third in 59.44secs.
FASTEST EVER 150
Elsewhere, South Africa’s four-time butterfly world champion Le Clos became the first man to win three consecutive gold medals in the same event at the Commonwealth Games with a storming victory in the 200 fly.
Le Clos swam a Games-record 1:54.00 for his second gold of the meet, his sixth career Commonwealth win and 14th medal overall.
Only Australians Leisel Jones (100/200m breaststroke) and Petria Thomas (100m butterfly) have won three consecutive golds in the same event at the Games.
Le Clos, who famously toppled American Olympic legend Michael Phelps in the 200m butterfly at the 2012 London Olympics, also won the gruelling event at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi and Glasgow.
“That was my fastest ever 150 split and then I knew the race was over,” said Le Clos, who later backed it up by beating Australia’s Olympic champion Kyle Chalmers in the 100m free semi-final.
“Obviously I’m not going to get the six medals but I’d like to win as many golds as possible and get the fly treble.”
Le Clos won the 50m fly on Friday, but his bid to win five more medals and become the all-time leading Games medallist fizzled out when he missed the podium in the 200m freestyle and the 4x100m free.
Campbell, meanwhile, swam the third-fastest time in history to win the 50m freestyle in a Games-record 23.78secs, edging out her sister Bronte and Canada’s Taylor Ruck who dead-heated for second.
“I’ve been really pleased with my racing so far and being able to put together fast races and improve from heats to semis to finals,” Campbell said.
It’s been a barnstorming meet for Campbell, anchoring her team to a world record in the 4x100m freestyle relay.
Canada’s world record-holder Masse out-touched Australian rival Emily Seebohm by three-hundredths of a second to win a pulsating 100m backstroke final in a Games-record 58.63secs.
“I knew she was going to be right there,” Masse said of her rivalry with Seebohm. “I had no idea how close she was at the end until I got out of the pool and I looked up at the times.”
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