Inside the common area Australia’s incredible Tokyo swim team used to inspire each other for a race – with photos of their most memorable moments
Swimming freestyle queen Emma McKeon has revealed a key secret behind Australia’s astonishing pool performance at the Tokyo Olympics – a communal area decorated with current squad performances.
On Instagram, McKeon, 27, who already has two gold and three bronze medals in a games she’ll never forget, gave an insight into how the all-conquering Aussies inspire each other before jumping out of the blocks.
The likes of McKeon, who won the 100m freestyle and 4x100m freestyle relay, midfielder Ariarne Titmus and freestyle gun Kyle Chalmers, are all featured, as are slogans to incite the team such as “dig deep,” “Yeah the Girls’ and ‘It’s all about our team.’
It’s clear that the communal space is a resounding success in Japan, with an 18 swim medal – including seven gold – making the dolphins currently revered in Australia for their collective success.
The common area used by Australia’s swimming team (pictured) at the Tokyo Olympics
Double gold medalist Emma McKeon shared a video of the Tokyo Olympics common area on her Instagram page
On Saturday, the Wollongong-raised McKeon tied the Australian medal record of Ian Thorpe and Leisel Jones, winning her ninth Olympic medal after the Australians took home bronze in a new event, the 4x100m mixed medley relay.
Australian quartet Kaylee McKeown (backstroke), Zac Stubblety-Cook (breaststroke), Matt Temple (butterfly) and McKeon (freestyle) fought hard before finally finishing behind Great Britain and China.
Amazingly, McKeon competed in the final of the 4×100-meter relay just minutes after completing the semifinals of the women’s 50-meter freestyle, where she broke the Olympic record.
“We knew it would go fast,” said McKeon after the mixed medley final.
“I think on the timeline it was a six minute break, which sounds pretty fast, but that’s what we train for and in training we do a lot more than that. So I knew I could handle it and the fact that it’s a relay wakes you up anyway.
‘A mixed relay, you don’t know where you are. I knew the girl on the other side of me from the Netherlands, she went freestyle last, so I knew I could get away from her a bit instead of focusing on (American superstar Caeleb) Dressel chasing me.”
On Sunday, McKeon has the chance to become the first Australian to win an unprecedented 10 Olympic career medals – and the first to win six medals at a single Games – in the 50m freestyle.
She is the favorite to take gold after breaking the Olympic record in a blistering midnight swim semifinal.
Emma McKeon was considered one of Australia’s best gold medalists for the Tokyo Games – and she’s done it on the big stage
Kaylee McKeown, Emma McKeon, Zac Stubblety-Cook and Matthew Temple (pictured right) from Australia after winning bronze in Saturday’s mixed 4x100m medley final