Although Abbie Wood’s fourth-place finish in the women’s 200-meter individual medley final at the Olympics was “gutting,” she found solace in posting a new personal best in the event.
A. Wood Olympic Games Tokyo 2020
After qualifying second quickest in the semi-finals, Wood was expected to contribute to Team GB’s medal surge in the pool at Tokyo 2020. However, her timing of two minutes and 9.15 seconds was only good enough for fourth place.
The 22-year-old was in third place going into the final 50 metres, and she ended up finishing just 11 hundredths of a second behind bronze medalist Kate Douglass. Douglass’s American teammate Alex Walsh won silver, and Japan’s Yui Ohashi won gold.
Wood described it as “Gutting” in his own words.
“I anticipated it was going to be a close race, and that’s the way it turned out. Whoever reached the barrier first won. Having this knowledge is a mixed bag. The timing is perfect for me. There wasn’t much else I could have done, I realised.
It might have been much worse if I had finished fourth and the time had been off my personal best. And I’m pleased I did, because putting myself out there paid off. In retrospect, I believe I set the appropriate tempo. Sport, I guess.
Wood, who almost quit swimming following a bad performance at the World Championship in Budapest four years ago, has set her sights on the women’s 200-meter breaststroke.
She continued, “I will put these frustrations into that and use this as a tremendous learning curve that the race isn’t finished until it’s over.”
After my first worlds in 2017, I was nearly ready to give up, but I was persuaded not to.
Since then, I’ve come a long way as a person.
It’s just that you’ve matured a lot. You have to think back to good times like that to get through the bad ones.
In a disappointing 2 minutes and 12.86 seconds, fellow Briton Alicia Wilson came in dead last.
James Wilby will compete in Thursday’s men’s 200-meter breaststroke final after finishing second in his semis heat with a time of 2 minutes, 7.91 seconds, while Ross Murdoch will not because he tied for fifth in his heat with a time of 2 minutes, 9.97 seconds.