Tokyo Olympics: Joseph Schooling eliminated in 100m free heats

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Singapore swimmer Joseph Schooling after his men's 100m freestyle heats. (PHOTO: SNOC/Kong Chong Yew)
Singapore swimmer Joseph Schooling after his men's 100m freestyle heats. (PHOTO: SNOC/Kong Chong Yew)

Reporting from Tokyo

TOKYO — In his first Olympic appearance since he clinched Singapore's first gold medal in 2016, Joseph Schooling clocked 49.84 seconds in the men's 100m freestyle heats at the Tokyo Aquatic Centre on Tuesday (27 July).

That timing placed him sixth out of eight swimmers in the heats, and 39th out of the 70 swimmers taking part in the event. With only the top 16 swimmers advancing to the semi-finals, Schooling was eliminated from the competition.

Five years ago at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, Schooling also competed in the same event, and set a national record of 48.27sec, which allowed him to advance into the semi-finals before he was eliminated.

"The time is definitely a tough one (to take)," Schooling told reporters at the mixed zone.

"That’s just an opportunity to come here and get up and race and see where we’re at, because I had no idea where my freestyle was going to be. The next thing I’m focused on is the 100m fly." 

Tuesday's race comes before his defence of the men's 100m butterfly gold, which begins on Thursday.

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