James Guy admitted he surprised even himself as he claimed 200m freestyle gold at the World Swimming Championships in Kazan, Russia.
Having already won 400m freestyle silver on the opening night of swimming action, Guy went one better in the shorter distance, setting a new British record of 1:45.14 minutes to claim the first major title of his career.
The 19-year-old touched ahead of China’s Olympic silver medallist Sun Yang and Germany’s world record holder Paul Biedermann to take Great Britain’s medal tally to five – and the teenager was struggling to take it all in.
“I never thought about beating Sun Yang or anyone,” Guy told British Swimming. “I just thought about swimming my own race and getting my tactics right and if I beat anyone it was a bonus.
“I never thought I’d even make the final. The main focus for me was the 400m free and I was so happy with silver but I did want to go a little faster in that final.
“Obviously I never thought I’d win the 200m as well so it’s a nice feeling.
“There’s more there for me though. You look at Ryan Lochte’s underwater phases and he’s like a dolphin. So if I had them, I could go even faster.”
There was plenty more to celebrate though as just moments later Adam Peaty – who won 100m gold the previous night – stormed into the 50m final by setting a new world record.
Peaty won his semi-final in 26.42 seconds, with South Africa’s two-time champion Cameron Van Der Burgh second fastest through.
“I feel pretty stoked really,” said Peaty. “The heats this morning were so easy and I just chilled out this afternoon – I wasn’t too tense.
“I went out there, improved my start and just let the swimming swim and that’s what I do all year round.
“It’s going to be a good final. Cameron’s a great guy and it’s going to be a great race tomorrow.”
Elsewhere, Chris Walker-Hebborn and Liam Tancock were fifth and eighth respectively in their 100m backstroke final, while Lauren Quigley was seventh in the women’s equivalent.
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor was the only other Brit in action, finishing tenth in the 200m freestyle semi-finals to fall just shy of a final berth.
© Sportsbeat 2015