Dan Wallace put a bad couple of months behind him to win Scotland’s third Gold medal of the swimming competition in the 400m Individual Medley, while Corrie Scott brought home a Bronze medal in the 50m Breaststroke final at Tollcross International Swimming Centre.
Wallace paced his race brilliantly and was not in any way phased by the early pace Sebastien Rousseau of South Africa was setting. Safe in the knowledge that the latter half of the race was his stronger part, Wallace slowly reined in his rival. A superb turn onto the breaststroke leg gave Wallace his cue to make the move and, with only 50m to go, he took the opportunity and stormed to victory in a time of 4:11.20, just outside the Commonwealth Games Record time he had set in the heats (4:11.04).
Rousseau paid the price for his early pace, fading towards the end, and it was Thomas Fraser-Holmes of Australia who won Silver, with Rousseau settling for Bronze. Scots Lewis Smith and Ross Muir finished 5th and 8th respectively.
On touching the wall Wallace was heard shouting into the air, which he later explained:
“I yelled at the top of my lungs ‘freedom’. Being here in front of a home crowd really brought out the Braveheart spirt and true Scot in me, and I just couldn’t help it.”
“I woke up this morning believing I could do this. I knew where I had to be at 200m and I knew I had the best breaststroke leg of the field. The crowd were absolutely amazing. I’ve never experienced anything like this. Hopefully this performance tonight will overshadow recent events and this is what I’ll be remembered for.
Earlier in the evening Corrie Scott had secured a fantastic Bronze medal in the 50m Breaststroke final, touching home in yet another personal best time. Leiston Pickett of Australia successfully defended the title she won in Delhi, with Jamaica’s Alia Atkinson taking Silver. Scott’s team-mates Kathryn Johnstone and Andrea Strachan finished 6th and 8th respectively.
Following the medal ceremony a jubilant Scott said: “I’ve been training so hard. I knew I could go fast but just didn’t know how fast. All I’ve been thinking about is to get through the heats, improve on my time in the semi-final, then in the final, anything could happen and it just did.
“Nights like this make all the early mornings and the training worthwhile. I’ve taken a year out of my university studies for this as I really wanted to leave no stone unturned in terms of my preparation. To achieve this medal in a pool I’ve been competing in since I was 11 years old, and in front of my parents, my grandparents and my cousins, has made this the best day ever.”
Robbie Renwick was unable to defend his 200m Freestyle title finishing 5th in 1:46.79 and Craig McNally finished 7th in the 100m Backstroke final in a time of 54.54.
The 4x100m Freestyle relay quartet of Robbie Renwick, Richard Schafers, Kieran McGuckin and Duncan Scott just missed out a medal, finishing 4th.
Ross Murdoch will be back in action tomorrow in the final of the 100m Breaststroke. There he will line up alongside Craig Benson, who also qualified from the semi-finals. Michael Jamieson misses out though, finishing 11th overall. It was a similar story for Kathleen Dawson who couldn’t improve on her heat time and finished 10th overall after the 100m Backstroke semi-finals. Sian Harkin will also feature for Scotland in the final of the 50m Freestyle.
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