Le Clos Feels Phelps Return Would Be Great For The Sport

  14 Jeff Grace | February 23rd, 2014 | Africa, Europe, International, News

South African Olympic and World Champion Chad le Clos made an appearance at the winter Olympics in Sochi representing Omega. While in Russia he talked about the possibility of Michael Phelps returning to competition, “The rumor is obviously trickling down all the way to South Africa. Everyone is talking about it,” le Clos told SuperSport.

“It would be great for the sport if he comes back. It would be great for me. I do welcome the challenge from anybody. If you want to win a gold medal, you want to beat the best.”

“I gave him one of his very few silvers.”

In 2012 the South African was the first man to beat Michael Phelps in his signature event, the 200 butterfly, in a major international competition since the 2002 Pan Pacific Championships. Since that time le Clos has gone on to win the 100 and 200 butterfly at the World Championships, break the short course world record in the 200 butterfly and win the overall World Cup title.

Whether Phelps returns to the pool or not it looks like le Clos will be following his example. It was recently revealed that he will be seeking eight national titles at the South African National Championships in April and could be swimming up to seven individual events at the Commonwealth Games this summer in Glasgow.

“I want to try and just see how many I can handle,” said le Clos. “The Commonwealth Games will give me a good indication. I’m not the kind of guy that likes to swim races and come fourth or fifth. I want to be among the medals and I want to be competitive.”

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14 Comments on "Le Clos Feels Phelps Return Would Be Great For The Sport"

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Although he’s never really said anything that was outright arrogant, I don’t feel that Le Clos is the most down to earth swimming around. He talks of wanting to emerge from the shadow of the title “Phelps Slayer”, but then again what kind of athlete would he be otherwise. Chances are, he’s already had the greatest moment of his career. Sure, he may drop times, take on different foes in different events, even break a world record or too, but from a historical perspective, unless he was going to put himself in the same sentence as Phelps in terms of legacy, Olympic historians would note him as the guy who beat Phelps in 2012. That said, I don’t think we’ve… Read more »

Oh yeah, 200back in Rio will be one of the densest events at the top. There most likely to 2 Americans, 2 Japanese, and a Pole pushing for 1:53 or better to win a medal. The gap between them and a wall of 1:56 is a tough gap to bridge for the rest of the field, including LeClos. ALso, it conflicts for a much more realistic medal prospect in the 200IM.

I think the 200back/200IM is a double that people won’t realistically attempty for another 10 years or so, unless, Hagino…

I am still feeling disappointed that Lochte did the double 200 back/IM in London. Had he swum either instead of both, he’d have gotten a gold instead of bronze and silver.

And I think Hagino has learnt a very expensive lesson in Barcelona and will not repeat the crazy schedule in Rio. but he should do the crazy schedule in non worlds/olympics, such as in Asian Games and Pan Pacific, just like what Le Clos is gonna do in Glasgow.

Le clos fluked a gold on a horrible finish. Still talking but not even close to phelps..

But if you want to talk about the biggest fluke 200 fly Olympics win of all time, here’s who you should know: Misty Hyman.

Hyman swam 2:05.88 to beat the super heavy favorite Susie O’Neill in Sydney 2000.

Hyman NEVER swam faster than 2:09 BEFORE or AFTER the Sydney Olympics

Come on… yes Le Clos talks, but let’s give the due to the guy

He swam 1:52.96… that’s not a fluke. Phelps himself has swum faster than 1:52.96 only once in textile

You are dismissing Le Clos’ 200 gold because Phelps had bad finish, then using the same logic Phelps shouldn’y have won the 100 fly in Beijing.

Le clos fluked a gold on a horrible finish…acts like he’s a god lol..weak at best

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About Jeff Grace

Writer Jeff Grace brings a wealth of experience in the sport, including the most relevant as a feature-writer for Swim News Magazine. As a former Nationally-ranked age group swimmer in Canada, Grace has been deeply immersed in the sport for decades. In addition to his time as a writer and a swimmer, …

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