Tom Dean wins elusive relay Commonwealth Games gold after losing to Duncan Scott


Tom Dean lost his singles match against Duncan Scott but won the relay war against Australia to cap off a stunning Commonwealth Games meeting.

Scott and Dean’s 200-meter individual medley on the last night of the race was a box-office hit, as was the 200-meter freestyle, which was repeated at the Olympics.

The race ended with a lead of 0.13 seconds in Scott’s favour.

Dean said ruefully and graciously, “I just can’t get away from that man out there!

“It’s unbelievable that two Britons are competing against each other repeatedly. We compete all season long and I knew he wanted to come to Birmingham and make his name.

“It’s such a big deal for Scots, he’s Scotland’s most decorated swimmer, which is an incredible achievement.”

Both Brits lost ground to Canada’s Finlay Knox in the back, but Scott flew from fourth to first at half-time.

The Glasgow star maintained his advantage in the breaststroke and then stopped, despite Dean separating him by more than half a second when he came home.

“I knew he was there, I was like, ‘Oh, he’s starting,'” Scott admitted. “Obviously I was breathing the other way, we’re both breathing on the right. “I know I’m much better at other shots, but he comes home strong, he’s faster than me in the freestyle. But Tom, a great racer, a great competitor. I knew he would come home quickly.”

Duncan Scott ended six record-breaking days in Birmingham

(Getty Images)

After answering questions about the fulfillment and frustrations of winning six silver medals, his single Dean tied with other swimmers for the combined most medals England had won in a single game.

Dean reappeared an hour later and secured England a surprise win over Australia in the men’s 4x100m individual medley.

By a narrow margin, Dean dueled 2016 Olympic gold medalist Kyle Chalmers and won it by the fingernails.

In doing so, he overtook the likes of Adam Peaty’s coach Mel Marshall and Siobhan-Marie O’Connor to become the most successful English athlete at a single Commonwealth game.

He said: “I showed how much it meant to me; It was pure emotion that came up.

“Six silvers to finally get the gold at the end means the world. It’s the first time we’ve had this medley combination and all the guys executed the perfect race plan.”

“Even after Olympic gold, you have to question your motivation for the sport. Olympic individual gold is the pinnacle of swimming so it was amazing to achieve that, but as soon as I got off the podium it was “where do I go from here?”.

“Then it’s about expanding the content of that CV and backing it up with Commonwealth Medals, World Medals. If I can exit 2022 as the most decorated Englishman of all time, that would be an incredible honor.

(Getty Images)

“Every race I’ve done since the Olympics, it’s felt like I have a target on my back. I wouldn’t have it any other way because it means I’ve done something great in the sport. If I can be the one who hunts instead of chasing, it can only be for a good reason.”

Previously, Ben Proud equated his world title with a Commonwealth victory in splash-and-dash freestyle.

The Plymouth racer, who also won the 50m butterfly, won in 21.36s and by a margin of 0.32s, a country mile in the race over a length, with teammate Lewis Burras taking silver.

He said: “It’s another legacy swim for me and it’s very nice to be on the podium with another Englishman. I managed to hold off the young guns for another year so I’m super happy.”

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