Adam Peaty is a wounded lion out for Commonwealth Games revenge - "I'm a f****** fighter"
Adam Peaty has warned that he is a wounded lion ready to unleash a redemption roar.
Britain’s greatest swimmer is a man in shock after being beaten into fourth place in Sunday’s 100 metres breaststroke final at the Commonwealth Games.
He returned to the pool twice yesterday to qualify for the 50m final but admitted losing had given him a sleepless night, struggling to process his first defeat over the distance.
Peaty said: “It was devastating for me and I had a really bad night, no more than two hours sleep. I just couldn't switch off because when you're in defence mode, you’re asking yourself what's gone wrong?
“That's who I am. I'm always looking about how do I get better. I don’t come here for fourth or silver or bronze.”
His head spinning, Peaty did not even bother warming up for today's heats. His coach Mel Marshall asked if he wanted to pull out: “I’m a f***ing fighter,” came the reply. “Back a lion into a corner and they are going to bite.
“I’m backed into a corner now and I'm okay with that because I've had a very comfortable four years since 2018. It’s important in an athlete's career to have these moments,” Peaty added. “Because with all that success you're like: 'Do I love this? Do I want to be here?'
“Those are the questions I'm going to have to address over the next few years.” Peaty, who has a giant lion tattoo on his left arm, did withdraw from the relays in response to his defeat and says that is just the start.
“I'm carrying way too much body weight, way too muscle for the 100m,” he added. “I need to lose four kilograms. I need to get back my technical endurance. Really it comes down to training, we can't hide from that. This year I just haven't had enough of it due to breaking my foot (10 weeks ago). My aerobic training has gone, “hold on a minute”.
“I haven’t even had a chance to know where I'm going. It's almost getting in the car without a destination.” For all that he swam a time in his 100m semi-final that none of the finalists, bar winner James Wilby, had ever matched. “Yeah, the semi-final time honey-potted me,” he admitted. “I thought I was in an okay position - but 59-high (in the final) is not okay.”
Four years ago Peaty was beaten in the 50m final and it proved the kick up the backside which propelled his career into another orbit.
“It gave me the hunger to go for the next two years,” he said, after qualifying second fastest, 0.02secs behind Australia’s Sam Williamson (27.01). “Maybe it’s God's will to get me to this point and have this real low to get me back up.”