El Hefnawy explodes a surprise and wins the swimming gold in the Tokyo Olympics and Ohashi gives Japan an unexpected medal | Tokyo Olympics 2020


Tunisia’s Ayoub El Hefnaoui made a big surprise on the first day of the swimming medals at the Tokyo Olympics, winning the 400m freestyle gold, while Yui Ohashi awarded Japan an unexpected gold in the women’s 400m individual medley on Sunday.

American Chase Kalish won the gold in the 400 meters medley, beating his compatriot Jay Letherland.

The Australian women broke the world time of the relay 4 in 100 meters freestyle after achieving 3 minutes and 29.69 seconds to win the gold, while Canada won the silver and America the bronze.

The 18-year-old Tunisian swimmer was the slowest among the finalists and started the race in the last lane, but he shone in the last meters and beat Australian Jack McLoughlin, to snatch the gold in 3 minutes and 43.36 seconds, while the American Kieran Smith took the bronze.

This is Tunisia’s fifth gold in its history in the Olympics, but it is the third in swimming, and El Hefnaoui was amazed after his performance.

“I can’t believe it,” he said. “It’s a dream come true. It’s amazing. It was my best race ever.”

Japanese surprise

There were no fans to cheer Ohashi, but her teammates and Japanese officials celebrated after the amazing performance to win the gold with a time of 4 minutes 32.08 seconds.

American Emma Wyant took the silver with a time of 4 minutes 32.76 seconds, and the bronze went to her compatriot Haley Fleckinger with a time of 4 minutes and 34.90 seconds.

Hungary’s Katinka Hossou, the defending champion who has dominated the race in recent years, settled for fifth place.

Ohashi overcame Flickinger in the breaststroke stage and entered the final stage of freestyle swimming with a difference of 1.99 seconds, which helped her to withstand Wiant’s attempts.

After winning the men’s 400 meter medley silver at the Rio Olympics, Calisch improved and grabbed the gold with a time of 4 minutes 9.42 seconds, to give America control of the first two places after Jay Letherland got the
Silver by 0.86 seconds. Australian Brendon Smith took bronze.

Calisch, 27, led the race after the noon swim, with Frenchman Leon Marchand in first place after the butterfly stage.

Calisch competed strongly with New Zealander Louis Clairbert during the breaststroke stage, but his opponent fell sharply in the freestyle stage and finished seventh in the final.

“It means everything,” Kalish said. “This is the last thing I really wanted to achieve in my swimming career. It’s something I’ve been dreaming of for a long time. I can’t believe it.”

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