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Olympic champion Tom Dean ‘lost for words’ as he leads home British one-two

Newly-crowned Olympic champion Tom Dean admitted he was ‘lost for words’ after shattering the British record to pip his team-mate Duncan Scott to gold.

Dean, who has twice contracted Covid and spent seven weeks out of the pool in the last 12 months while he recovered, clocked 1:44.22 to touch 0.04 ahead of Scott in a thrilling 200m Freestyle race.

It sealed the first one-two for Britain in an Olympic swimming final since 1908.

It was an incredible performance from Dean, who knocked 0.36 seconds off his lifetime best to seal top spot on the podium.

He said: “I knew it was going to be a dogfight – I didn’t know how people were going to swim it.

“It was just race the race and that’s what I did.

“I want to say thanks so much to everyone back home. My mum, my family, my girlfriend – I’m lost for words.

“All the boys back at Maidenhead – thanks for staying up. It’s amazing.”

Scott, who also swam a lifetime best to take silver, was quick to praise Dean for his performance.

He said: “A massive credit to Deano there – it was unbelievable.

“Olympic champion. He has come along so far in the last 18 months – it’s a pleasure to watch.

“It’s great to be able to say he is a good mate out of the pool and it’s great to be able to compete against him as well.”

Amazing story

Swimming in lane six, Dean was in contention throughout and was third as they turned into the last 50m, with Scott just behind him fourth.

But a superb last 50m saw him claw his way past Brazil’s Fernando Scheffer and Korea’s Sunwoo Hwang and he just had enough to touch first ahead of his room-mate Scott.

After receiving his medal, National Centre Bath swimmer Dean added: “Two Brits on the podium going one-two shows dominance in this event and how far British Swimming and Team GB have come.

“My coach, Dave McNulty, I can’t thank him enough for what he has done. He said we were writing an amazing story this year with the Covid cases.

“I’ve had six or seven weeks out of the pool during an Olympic year – that’s unheard of but he brought me through it.

“I can’t thank him enough for that and here we are – I can’t ask for a better end to the story.”