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Ye Shiwen and coach explain 200 meter medley disappointment in Barcelona


09:01, July 31, 2013

BARCELONA, Spain, July 29 (Xinhua) -- The failure of Olympic gold medalist Ye Shiwen to finish among the medals in the women's 200 meter medley in the world championships currently being held in the city of Barcelona is one of the big shocks of the first two days of racing in the pool.

The 17-year-old looked off her best form and finished fourth in the race, a long way behind Hungarian gold medal winner Katinka Hosszu and over a second behind silver and bronze medalists Alice Coutts and Spain's Mireia Belmonte, who had swum a 1,500 meter freestyle heat earlier in the day.

Ye Shiwen was off the pace throughout the race and made the final turn in last place, before her strong freestyle took her to fourth by the end.

Speaking to Xinhua afterwards, Ye appeared to be in good spirits despite the setback, but admitted she had not been close to her best.

"I was expecting to do better," she said, "but after the first 100 meters I felt pretty bad in the water. I tried to catch up in the breast-strike (third leg), but it left me too much to do over the last 50 meters."

Ye explained she had followed the instructions of coach, Xu Guoyi in the two qualifying rounds and had swum the times he had instructed her to attend to, but that she had been unable to keep up the pace in the final.

"I am someone who relies on their feelings before I race and on this occasion I felt bad and I was unable to sleep before the race," she said, admitting her success in the London Olympic Games meant she had to live with a lot more pressure.

Her coach explained that the youngster had suffered in the wake of London and at one stage had gained 5 kilos in weight, although Xu Guoyi was at pains to insist he had been working hard and training well in the run in to the World Championships.

He believed the problem had been more psychological than anything. "She is quite an extreme person and the nerves got to her. I am sure she would have on if she had been in her normal form" he explained.

Ye also received support from gold medal winner Hosszu, who said she had suffered from a loss of form herself after winning two World Championship medals in 2009 and European titles in 2010

"I was really surprised Ye Shiwen wasn't there on the podium, but I am sure she will be again in the future. It's really hard to get back after the Olympics and a similar thing happened to me," said Hosszu after the race.

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