Dan Jervis reached an Olympic final in his maiden Games and has already served notice that he will crack the podium in Paris.
The 25-year-old from Resolven booked his place in the final of the 1500m freestyle but was a little bit off his best time, swimming 14:55.48 to finish fifth.
That was nine seconds off his best but still a creditable performance in his first Olympics.
And Jervis has got a taste for the big stage, vowing to come back stronger in three years’ time in Paris where he intends to win a medal.
Jervis, whose Olympic debut was broadcast live on Eurosport and discovery+, said: “I’ve got mixed emotions about that. You know, it was my dream to walk out and listen to my words ‘men’s 1500m Olympic final’. I felt if I grew wings to be honest with you. I tried my best, I wanted a quicker time than that, I’m certainly capable of a quicker time than that. I’m just, I think the day before yesterday I was really on top of the emotions and today I just let it get to me a little too much, which I’m gutted about.
“I’ve had my first Team GB experience now. I’m coming to the end of it now and, yeah, Paris in three years’ time, obviously I know it’s not in Great Britain but it’s very much a home Games and I’m praying that this pandemic will be over by then and that fans will be there – not that that affected me today – but yeah, in three years’ time I trust the process, I trust god that I’m going to be on that podium. I deserve for it, I work for it, I deserve it and I’ll be there.”
It was a very quick final, with a quartet quickly opening up a lead that left Jervis swimming his own race in fifth.
Even his personal best would not have been good enough to make it onto the podium this time around.
But Jervis is determined to close the gap over the next three years.
He added: “When I train back home I train for that (swimming his own race). That’s why I’m a little bit disappointed really. I kinda expected that, I knew some of them were going to go off like rockets and to come fifth in my first Olympic final is incredible.
“I can only, obviously there’s some disappointment with me, but I can leave with so many positives. It was a very tough race, mentally more tough than physically.”
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