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Sport Cold truth as America freaks out over Titmus

02:40  27 july  2021
02:40  27 july  2021 Source:   wwos.nine.com.au

Tokyo Olympics swimming stars Ariarne Titmus and Katie Ledecky could be greatest rivalry of the Games

  Tokyo Olympics swimming stars Ariarne Titmus and Katie Ledecky could be greatest rivalry of the Games US swim star Katie Ledecky will have her eye on five gold meals at the Tokyo Olympics but Australia's Ariarne Titmus will be out to stop her in what could be the greatest rivalry of the Games.It features one of the greatest female freestyle swimmers in history, the United States' Katie Ledecky, and the Australian who has been chasing her down, Ariarne Titmus.

Ariarne Titmus didn't just beat Katie Ledecky at the Tokyo Olympics, she beat her in the best form the iconic American has had for three years.

The 3:57.36 time that Ledecky swam in the 400m freestyle final was, in fact, the best that she's ever produced outside of her world record (3:56.46). Titmus (3:56.69), just 0.23 outside the world record, was simply better. Full stop.

Americans, on social media in particular, have been losing their minds over Titmus beating Ledecky, apparently forgetting that the Aussie also beat the US great over 400m at the 2019 world championships.

OLYMPICS LIVE BLOG: DAY 4 UPDATES, NEWS | TOKYO GAMES EVENTS CENTRE: SCHEDULE, RESULTS, MEDAL TALLY

Titmus beats Ledecky to gold in Olympic blockbuster

  Titmus beats Ledecky to gold in Olympic blockbuster Australia's Ariarne Titmus won gold over Katie Ledecky in the 400m freestyle final at the Tokyo Olympics on Monday. Swimming in lane three, next to Ledecky in lane four, Titmus clocked 3:56.69 to beat the US megastar in 3:57.36. China's Li Bingjie (4:01.08) was third.On Olympic debut, Titmus became the first Aussie woman to win the 400m freestyle at the Games since icon Shane Gould in 1972. It was Ledecky's first-ever loss in an individual event at the Olympics."I can't believe it. I'm trying to contain my emotions," Titmus said on pool deck afterwards.

Sports Illustrated senior writer Pat Forde offered a bit of cool-headed context.

https://twitter.com/ByPatForde/status/1419489931890618376?s=20 a girl in a pool of water: Ariarne Titmus and Katie Ledeckyreact after competing in the Women's 400m Freestyle Final on day three of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. © Getty Ariarne Titmus and Katie Ledeckyreact after competing in the Women's 400m Freestyle Final on day three of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

Some in the US media believe that Titmus had Ledecky, a five-time Olympic gold medallist and the defending 400m champion, spooked before their race.

"Her eyes gave her away, though, belying a trepidation inconsistent with arguably the most dominant female swimmer in history," the San Diego Union Tribune's Mark Ziegler wrote.

"She looked nervous, anxious, tense, concerned. Justifiably so, it turned out. Four minutes later, her nearly decade-long reign over distance swimming had been usurped by a 20-year-old from the Australian island of Tasmania."

Swim Stars Titus and Ledecky ensure spectacle in the basin

 Swim Stars Titus and Ledecky ensure spectacle in the basin Tokyo. The superstars Ariarne Titmus and Katie Ledecky provide great floating moments in Tokyo. A British celebrates a favorite victory, an American is a record. The appearance of Isabel Gose can also encourage the largest German hope carriers. © Martin Meissner Ariarne Titmus (r.) And Katie Ledecky. Isabel Gose was anything but unhappy, despite her supporting role in the gripping floating final of the Olympic Day.

Katie Ledecky swimming in a pool of water: Ariarne Titmus and Katie Ledecky react after the Women's 400m Freestyle Final at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. © Getty Ariarne Titmus and Katie Ledecky react after the Women's 400m Freestyle Final at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

Ledecky's legacy is being dissected in the wake of her defeat; the first time that she's lost an individual event at the Olympics.

"Ledecky has been more admired than beloved; she has been almost as dominant as Simone Biles but not nearly as fun to watch," Sports Illustrated's Michael Rosenberg wrote.

"In Rio, she won this race by almost five seconds, which is a lifetime. The gap between Ledecky and silver medallist Jazz Carlin was wider than between silver and seventh place.

"It was absurd, but once she gets so far ahead that she is basically alone on your television screen, what else is there to say?"

a person swimming in the water: Ariarne Titmus of Team Australia reacts after winning the gold medal in the Women's 400m Freestyle. © Getty Ariarne Titmus of Team Australia reacts after winning the gold medal in the Women's 400m Freestyle.

US sports writers were mightily impressed with how Titmus brought Ledecky back to earth.

Titmus on course for Ledecky, take two

  Titmus on course for Ledecky, take two Australia's Ariarne Titmus and her American rival Katie Ledecky are on track for another medal race in the 200m freestyle at the Tokyo Olympics. © Joe Giddens/AAP PHOTOS Australia's Ariarne Titmus is on course to face Katie Ledecky in another gripping final in the pool. Some seven hours after the Australian pipped Ledecky in a gripping 400m freestyle final, the pair returned in different heats over the shorter distance. Both cruised through, with Ledecky logging Monday night's fastest time of one minute 55.28 seconds.Australia's Titmus (1:55.

"Australia's Ariarne Titmus — nicknamed the "Terminator" — lived up to her billing when she chased down Ledecky in the 400 freestyle to win one of the most anticipated races of the Summer Games," the Associated Press' Paul Newberry wrote.

"For the first time in her brilliant Olympic career, Ledecky felt the sting of defeat, dished out by a rival from Down Under who made it clear she was not intimidated by the American star."

Ledecky herself was gracious, praising the Aussie's race.

"I fought tooth and nail," Ledecky said. "She definitely swam a really smart race. She was really controlled up front. I felt pretty smooth and strong going out and flipped at the 300 and it was like, 'Oh, she's right there'."

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Titmus hails American swim great Ledecky .
Australia's dual swimming gold medallist Ariarne Titmus says she's full of admiration for American great Katie Ledecky.After their terrific Tokyo trilogy, Ariane Titmus and Katie Ledecky finally are side-by-side.

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