Australian swimmer Cam McEvoy said he “didn’t have much energy” in his preliminary swim of the 50 free, in spite of going sub-22 and feeling strong.
“That was good, ducked under 22, felt strong,” McEvoy said. “I didn’t have much energy this morning, naturally, so it was good to do a good swim like that.”
McEvoy, who has missed the podium in his other two races so far (the individual 100 free and the 400 free relay) swam 21.95 in the preliminary round of the 50, which qualified him through to Friday evening’s semi-finals in 7th place.
While McEvoy has traditionally improved between prelims and semi-finals of his pet event, the 100 free, where he was the 2015 Worlds silver medalist, in Rio he added time in the 50 from 21.80 to 21.89 and missed the finals by placing 11th.
At Australia’s 2017 World Championship Trials, however, he had a big drop between prelims and finals in the two-round 50, moving from 21.73 to 21.55.
McEvoy is part of a tightly-bunched field between 6th-place qualifying Ben Proud at 21.93 and 11th-place qualifying Damian Wierling at 22.00, with swimmers like 50 fly medalist Andrey Govorov lurking at a 22.05. With veterans like the World Champions Cesar Cielo, Italy’s Luca Dotto, Finland’s Ari-Pekka Liukkonen, and defending 50 free vice-champion Nathan Adrian lurking, McEvoy will have to find his energy in the semi-finals if he hopes to advance.