Gold Coast (Australia) (AFP) – A chastened Adam Peaty will look to channel his anger into hard work after the swimmer’s cloak of invincibility slipped at the Commonwealth Games.
There was more than a hint of fury in the Englishman’s sizzling breaststroke leg in Tuesday’s 4x100m medley relay, when he turned a chunky deficit into a lead for James Guy, only for Australia to out-touch them for gold.
But Peaty, who 24 hours earlier had been beaten for the first time in four years by South African Cameron van der Burgh in the 50m breaststroke, insisted he would use defeat to come back even stronger.
“Yes, 100 percent. The athlete in me is hungry for more and it’s kind of angry,” said the 100m Olympic champion after rediscovering his mojo on the final night.
“Why didn’t I work hard? Those are the questions I have to ask when I’m back in training,” added Peaty, who holds the world record for the 50 and 100m breaststroke.
“Even though it’s a silver medal it feels like that this will now hopefully have more value to the golds in the future and make me work harder than anyone else from now on.”
Peaty retained his 100m Commonwealth title at the weekend, after which he talked of a lifetime of dominance in the event.
But he also revealed that he had concerns about whether he could stay motivated until the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and beyond.
However, Peaty looked to be back having fun in the medley relay when he produced a blistering 100m breaststroke leg of 57.64.
“It’s great to get back to what I do,” said the 23-year-old, who had proven invincible since storming to gold at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
“I think where I’ve gone wrong this week is I’ve been getting carried away with chasing times, chasing performance. I was out there for the team tonight and backing up the boys, so I was having fun.
“I settled on that normal rate that I used in Rio and it worked,” added Peaty, looking forward to the European championships in August.
“That gives me confidence now that I can swim fast in April and let’s see what we get in August.”
Obsessed with self-improvement, Peaty’s brutal workout sessions are the stuff of legend. But the muscular Brit believes that lightening up could be the key to future success.
“I’ve learnt that I need to relax and not put any expectations on myself,” he said.
“Even though I like that external pressure to get that performance, I think when I’m in training now I need to relax, learn that rate and the performance will come.”