Chinese teenage wonder Ye Shiwen's amazing world record finish to her 400m medley win was the talk of the Olympics yesterday with American superstar Ryan Lochte saluting her performance.
Sixteen-year-old Ye obliterated the world record with a sensational final freestyle lap to blow away American world champion Elizabeth Beisel to win Saturday's final in four minutes 28.43 seconds.
Closer inspection of the lap splits revealed that Ye actually swam faster in the final 50m lap than in Lochte's victory in the men's 400m medley a few events before.
Ye clocked 28.93secs for last 50m compared to Lochte's 29.10secs while she wasn't far off the American's time for the last 100m -- 58.68secs compared to 58.65secs.
"We were all talking about it last night at dinner, it is pretty impressive," Lochte said after his heat of the 200m freestyle.
"She's fast, if she was there with me, maybe she would have beaten me."
Ye put down her astonishing effort to burn off her rivals in a sizzling time to her hard training.
"I think it is because I have had very good training recently, which is why I got this result," she said.
"I am so excited, this is like something out of a dream. Before the final I didn't sleep so well, but it didn't effect my performance, I have trained hard."
Ye says there is more to come as she benefits from her rigorous training regime.
"I am very lucky, starting from my childhood we have a very scientific training, so it's not tough for me as I have trained since I was a child," she said.
"I think swimming in China is very important. Of course, I am not trained like a robot!
"I am very young and I am sure I will just get better."
Ye's performance in London was redolent of her sensational 200m medley win at last year's Shanghai world championships at the age of 15.
The Chinese prodigy was in fifth place with 50m to go but she made up nearly one-and-a-half seconds on the freestyle leg to claim gold.*AFP
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