Article bye Julian Linden courtesy of the Australian.
Kyle Chalmers unleashed one of the fastest splits in history to give Australia a surprise silver medal in the men’s 4x100m freestyle relay at the world championships on Saturday. The 2016 Olympic champion, Chalmers was a long shot to even make the Australian team after coming out of shoulder surgery less than three months ago.
But, just as he has done throughout his entire career, the South Australian defied all the doubters with a stunning anchor leg swim timed at 46.60 seconds to give the Aussies silver behind the United States. “I think that’s one of the best ones for me,” he said.
“Ten weeks ago I was 100 kilos and coming back from my second shoulder surgery so for me to be on this team at the world championships, swimming in the relay with three of my great mates, having Jack (Cartwright) back in the relay team, a guy I train with every single day (Matt Temple), having a rookie (William Yang) that’s energising me.
“It’s special and something that I want to be a part of, something I worked so hard for. I’ve sacrificed so much for so long to be here on this team, to be at the top and if my shoulders are feeling good and my mind’s feeling good, I want to be here representing my country.
“I challenge anyone to go through what I’ve gone through over this last little period and try and stand up and perform like that, especially this last little window where I’ve been completely slammed for doing what I’m best at.”
A fearless competitor, Chalmers has a long history of making the impossible seem possible but this performance was something else that left his own teammates in awe.
“To see Kyle get back in the pool 10 weeks ago and to see what he’s gone through the past 10 weeks, it’s incredible that he’s here,” Temple said. “And to finish off like that, he must be doing something right.
So it’s special for him.”
It was a special moment for all four members, who played their part in giving Chalmers a target he could chase after Zac Incerti was ruled out with illness.
“I wasn’t expecting to make the team. I obviously did a massive PB in Australian trials and I came here really just wanting to do a little PB here and that’s what I did here,” Yang said.
I’m just really happy to do my part for the team and come out with a silver. It’s amazing.” › Backstroke champion Kaylee McKeown has withdrawn from her pet event. The dual Tokyo Olympics gold medallist and 100m backstroke world record holder will focus instead on the individual medley.