EMOTIONAL Rebecca Adlington credited a rousing home crowd last night after she became the first British woman to claim swimming medals in consecutive Olympic Games.
The Mansfield 23-year-old summoned a tremendous finish to win bronze in the women’s 400m freestyle – Great Britain’s first medal in the pool at London 2012.
Adlington, who won two golds four years ago in Beijing, is tipped for more success in Friday evening’s final of the 800m, her favoured event.
“I’m crying because the crowd is so overwhelming,” she said. “Twelve years of hard work has gone into that and it’s hard, it was so hard. It’s always the 400m that feels tougher than the 800m. I’m so glad I got a medal at a home Games; not many people can say that.”
Britain’s other swimming finalist, Ellen Gandy, finished last in the women’s 100m butterfly final as American Dana Vollmer took gold in a world record time of 55.98 seconds.
Three more Britons secured their final places, most impressively Liam Tancock, who finished a close second in his 100m backstroke semi-final.
Tancock will be back at the Aquatics Centre for tonight’s final, as will Robbie Renwick for the men’s 200m freestyle and Gemma Spofforth in the women’s 100m backstroke.
France shocked an all-star USA team boasting Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte to claim a brilliant gold in the 4x100m freestyle relay.