Adam Peaty of Great Britain won the 100m breaststroke on night two of the 2015 FINA World Championships, taking down South African rival Cameron Van Der Burgh by just 0.07 seconds.
“Cameron put up a very good race, but I reacted,” said Peaty. “He was out so fast I didn’t really see him, but it was nice to come back and not give up an inch.”
Van Der Burgh was out in 26.79, well ahead of Peaty who turned at the first 50 wall in 27.20. Coming back, Peaty began to gain ground and out-split Van Der Burgh 31.32 to 31.80 in order to win the gold medal.
The times from the two of them were somewhat slower than previously expected. Peaty became the first man under 58-seconds in the 100m breaststroke earlier this season, breaking the world record with a 57.92. In semis at worlds, Peaty set a new championship record time of 58.18, and Van Der Burgh came close to his personal best rocking a 58.49.
In finals, both were slower than they were in semis. Peaty won the race in 58.52, Van Der Burgh was second in 58.59.
Peaty didn’t seem to be disappointed by any means by his performance saying, “you’re not thinking about the time you’re just thinking about getting that gold and getting your hands on that wall first.”
With his victory Peaty became just the fourth British swimmer ever to win gold at a World Championships.
Talking about the race Peaty described it as, “very painful, but you know I didn’t give up an inch, and you know I fought for every inch, and it counts in the back end”
Peaty will face off against Van Der Burgh again during the 50m breaststroke final on night four.