2020 TOKYO SUMMER OLYMPIC GAMES
- When: Pool swimming: Saturday, July 24 – Sunday, August 1, 2021
- Open Water swimming: Wednesday, August 4 – Thursday, August 5, 2021
- Where: Olympic Aquatics Centre / Tokyo, Japan
- Heats: 7 PM / Semifinals & Finals: 10:30 AM (Local time)
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Anyone watching the 7th day of finals here in Tokyo was treated to a shiny new World Record in the men’s 100m fly, courtesy of American dynamo Caeleb Dressel. However, Hungary’s Kristof Milak, the man who already bagged 200m fly gold here decisively, also dipped under the 50-second threshold.
For the first time in his career, 21-year-old Milak crushed a sub-50 outing of 49.68 to check in with a new European Record. Entering this meet, Milak’s previous best rested at the 50.18 he produced at the European Championships. With his result, Milak is now the 2nd fastest 100m fly performer of all time.
After the race, Milak and his coach Attila Selmeci spoke to the press about what future 100m fly prospects.
“Let’s face it, a year ago if someone said Milak was going to swim 49.6, not many of us would have believed him. The difference between the two of them [Milak and Dressel] is getting narrower, if Kristóf continues, it is possible that the world champion will no longer be Caeleb Dressel next year, but Kristóf Milák.
However, Selmeci expressed groundedness about the 200m fly future as well. “And in the same way, someone can show up at 200, just as he exploded at 100 now. Such is the sport, once at the top and other times you have to climb back from the bottom. No one knows where such talent will emerge, but I am confident that we can maintain our top spot in the world at 200.” (Index Hungary)
Selmeci and Milak have been a coach/athlete duo for 8 years, of which Selmeci expressed, “A lot has changed during this period, perhaps the most important thing is awareness, it has become much more conscious, I can safely say that.”
The coach said that Milak has ‘become very receptive and open, perhaps more accepting of criticism when he had refused to do so before.’
From Milak himself, the swimmer spoke of his 100m fly performance. “Yeah, I smiled because it was a great race, with great opponents and a brilliant swimmer. It was really an excellent swim now, maybe I left a tenth at the wall, but I don’t think I could come any better now, so I’m proud that Caeleb needed a world record to win.
“In the spring, especially at the European Championships, several foreign swimmers told me, listen, you can do it, you can catch Dressel. I replied, don’t have fun with me, it’s an impossibility.
“Now, however, I have seen that there is a reality to this, and it gives tremendous motivation. Maybe even a little bigger, but definitely different from what I have to prepare for the two hundred, as it seems, at the moment I can only compete with myself.”
Regarding the postponement of the Olympics, Milak said the year delay worked to his advantage,
“I certainly couldn’t have swum one hundred like this last year. That’s all I could do to get stronger, work on my speed, and that’s a good sign to continue.”
Kristof Milak quotes courtesy of the Hungarian Swimming Federation.