McKeon dazzles in Commonwealth pool as Kenny wins cycling gold

Australia’s gold medalist Emma McKeon (L) poses during the medal ceremony for the women’s 50m butterfly swimming final at the Sandwell Aquatics Centre, England’s gold medalist Laura Kenny (R) celebrates her victory in the women’s 10 km cycling event. Photos: AFP

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Australia’s gold medalist Emma McKeon (L) poses during the medal ceremony for the women’s 50m butterfly swimming final at the Sandwell Aquatics Centre, England’s gold medalist Laura Kenny (R) celebrates her victory in the women’s 10 km cycling event. Photos: AFP

Australian swimming sensation Emma McKeon won a record 12th Commonwealth Games gold medal on Monday as cycling star Laura Kenny ended her campaign with an emotional gold medal.

It was another night of dominance in the Birmingham pool for Australia, who now have 16 golds at the Sandwell Aquatics Center out of a possible 33.

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McKeon, who won the 50m butterfly on home soil, has now won four gold medals in Birmingham and has collected more gold medals overall than any other athlete in Commonwealth Games history.

The 28-year-old, who won seven medals at the Tokyo Olympics last year – including four golds – clocked 25.90 seconds.

“I love a challenge,” McKeon said. “Just having this huge workload prepares me for Paris (2024 Olympics) and even though it’s a tough physical workload, it just trains my mind to be able to do so many races in a row.

“I won’t have as many once I get to Paris. It’s just to build that self-confidence.”

Rising Canadian star Summer McIntosh, just 15, won her second gold medal of the Games, adding the women’s 200m IM title to her 400m IM crown.

– 48-hour “hell” –
Australian Kyle Chalmers won the men’s 100m freestyle final in 47.51 seconds after a 48-hour period he described as “hell” following intense media speculation about his relationship with team members.

Reports suggest a rift with McKeon and Cody Simpson, who is reportedly dating McKeon, Chalmers’ ex-girlfriend.

The 2016 Olympic champion said: “The lies and false truths being broadcast – it’s far from the truth.

“We’re great friends and have great support. I’m just grateful to be part of the team and to share that with every member of the team.”

Australian Olympic champion Kaylee McKeown destroyed the field to win the women’s 200m backstroke and Australia ended the evening on a high by winning the men’s 4x200m freestyle relay.

– Follow the gold –
England’s Kenny and Australia’s Matthew Glaetzer won gold medals in a thrilling track cycling final in London.

New Zealand’s Ellesse Andrews in the women’s keirin and her compatriot Aaron Gate in the men’s 40km points race both won their third gold medal of the Games.

Kenny, who has suffered a miscarriage and an ectopic pregnancy since competing in the Tokyo Olympics last year, admitted she thinks it will be “my last race”.

However, she refocused and won the women’s 10 kilometer scratch on the same track where 10 years ago, at age 20, she won double Olympic gold.

Kenny admitted his confidence was shaken by a horrific accident on Sunday which led to his teammate, Matt Walls, being taken to hospital.

“I can’t believe it. I honestly said to Jase (Jason Kenny, her husband) ‘I think this will be my last race,'” the five-time Olympic gold medalist told the BBC.

“I lost the spark, training is not that easy. I just lost my motivation.

“Then last night I was messaging my new coach Len and I was like ‘No, I’m not giving up, I still have a roll of the dice, please help me’.

“It couldn’t have been better organized if I had tried.”

Glaetzer battled thyroid cancer to compete in the Olympics.

But after bad luck in Birmingham – failing in the keirin and then stripping of his bronze medal in the sprint on Sunday – he won the men’s 1000m time trial to add to his gold in the team sprint.

“I make a habit of bouncing back at the Commonwealth Games,” he said.

“I would rather not have such lows to come back, but it shows there is always a new day and we can always try again.”

England extended their dominance of gymnastics competition.

Local boy Joe Fraser battled pain from a broken foot to win gold on pommel horse while Jake Jarman won men’s floor to go with his men’s all-around title.

“I can say without a doubt that this was probably the best routine I’ve done in my career as a gymnast,” Jarman said.

England’s Courtney Tulloch retained her rings title while Georgia Mae-Fenton won gold on women’s uneven bars.

Australia’s Georgia Goodwin won the women’s vault.

England have won seven of the nine gold medals on offer in the gymnastics competition so far.

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