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US Olympic Swimming Trials 2021: Ryan Lochte fails to qualify for Tokyo Olympics

Ryan Lochte failed to make it to the Tokyo Olympics
Ryan Lochte failed to make it to the Tokyo Olympics
Hari Kishore M

Any Olympic dream Ryan Lochte had was shattered on Friday. The American swimmer, expected to dominate the 200m medley at the US Olympic Swimming Trials 2021, failed agonizingly to finish a miserable seventh.

Michael Andrew and Chase Kalisz were the top two finishers and will be on the flight to Tokyo.

Ryan Lochte set the record for the 200m medley in 2011 with a time of 1:54.00, a record that still stands unbroken.

Read: Simone Manuel fails to qualify for Tokyo Olympics 2020 in 100m due to mental health issues

This time, it was Michael Andrew all the way and he secured his first Olympic berth in style. He finished 1:55.44 while Chase Kalisz clocked 1:56.97. Ryan Lochte clocked 1:59.67, a whopping four seconds behind the winner.

Michael Andrew started well and led by more than two seconds after the butterfly leg but couldn’t keep up the pace in the freestyle discipline. However, his early lead meant he could come back in time before Chase Kalisz.

Ryan Lochte, in all probability, will finish his career with 12 podium finishes in the Olympics, including six gold medals, only second to compatriot Michael Phelps.

After the 200m medley, Ryan Lochte admitted to have “let everyone down.”

As Ryan Lochte prepared to leave the deck dejected, he was hugged by Michael Andrew and Chase Kalisz while Lochte’s wife and kids joined in later. Soon after, Michael Phelps walked down to the deck and greeted Ryan Lochte.

Also read: Caeleb Dressel shatters US open record to secure Tokyo berth

Ryan Lochte: Always in the news

While Ryan Lochte dominated the swimming pool, his life was marked with several injuries and controversies.

He suffered a concussion after falling from a tree at school, a leg fracture after falling off his scooter, a torn meniscus while dancing and tearing an MCL and an ACL injury on his knee after running to catch a fan. These are just some of Lochte’s run-in with injuries.

A stunt during the Rio de Janeiro Olympics almost threatened to keep him away from the sport. Ryan Lochte lied about being robbed at gunpoint in Rio and after an investigation he was suspended by the swimming association for close to a year and in the process lost all his sponsors.

Just when it looked like he had put his past behind him, Ryan Lochte was suspended again when he posted a photo of him receiving an illegal substance. Alcohol rehabilitation followed that dark episode. It was a terrible time for the swimmer who had to deal with tearing a hamstring right after that. A reality TV show stint accentuated his list of worries.

Also read: Ryan Murphy tops backstroke charts, seals Tokyo Olympics berth

Ryan Lochte seemed to have put everything behind him when he arrived at the US Olympic Swimming Trials 2021, gunning for a fifth Olympic appearance, but sadly that wasn’t to be.

Ryan Murphy all set for Olympic double again

Ryan Murphy won the 200m backstroke in 1:54.20 and will be aiming to defend the double of the 100m and 200m backstroke at the Tokyo Olympics. Ryan Murphy will also have history favoring him as the backstroke events have been dominated by American swimmers since the 1996 Atlanta Games.

Joining Ryan Murphy in the 200m backstroke will be Bryce Mefford, who finished 1:54.70.

Also read: Regan Smith wins 100m back, books first Olympic berth

Lilly King finishes second at the US Olympic Swimming Trials 2021

Annie Lazor and Lilly King will compete in the women's 200m breaststroke at the Tokyo Olympics after the duo secured the top-two spots at the US Olympic Swimming Trials 2021.

Annie Lazor finished at 2:21.07 while Lilly King clocked 2:21.75.

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Lilly King, who won the 100m breaststroke at the Rio Olympics, emerged victorious in the 100m event, as well, at the US Olympic Swimming Trials 2021.

Lilly King took an early lead, staving off a stiff challenge from Emily Escobedo but it was Annie Lazor who hogged the limelight. She was fourth at the halfway stage but pulled ahead in dramatic style to leave Lilly King and Emily Escobedo wondering.

Also read: Kieran Smith joins elite club featuring Caeleb Dressel, Simone Manuel and Katie Ledecky


Edited by Diptanil Roy

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