Jeffcoat bounces again from ‘brink of melancholy’ to win gold
New Zealand swimmer Andrew Jeffcoat bounced again from the “brink of melancholy” within the wake of lacking the Olympics a 12 months in the past to savour a hard-won gold within the 50 metres backstroke on the Commonwealth Video games.
The 23-year-old clocked a private greatest and nationwide document of 24.65 seconds to pip South Africa’s Pieter Coetze on the Sandwell Aquatics Centre in Birmingham.
It got here after a slew of setbacks within the lead-up and a heart-breaking near-miss for a medal within the 100m occasion.
“My profession’s been filled with ups and downs,” Jeffcoat stated.
“And each time there is a down, I will have my second, to dwell on it, to have a little bit of a cry and a little bit of a moan, however I will get again and I will use it.
“Lacking out on the Olympics final 12 months was a kind of moments sitting again at residence getting ready to melancholy.
“However as an alternative of giving up and calling it quits, I vowed to myself that I’d do every thing I can to not miss out on the staff once more.”
Jeffcoat contracted Covid-19 from a team-mate days after reserving his ticket to Birmingham and fell sick once more within the run-up to a disappointing world championships in Budapest.
Ending fourth within the 100m backstroke in Birmingham on the weekend was such a hammer blow that he struggled to congratulate team-mate Lewis Clareburt for his shock victory within the 400m medley on the identical day.
“I used to be a bit heartbroken – so I wasn’t there to help him as I ought to have,” stated Jeffcoat.
Jeffcoat’s improvement as a swimmer was overshadowed by the lack of his long-time coach Ken Nixon, who died immediately throughout a home swim occasion in 2019.
He stated he had been making an attempt to maintain Nixon out of his thoughts whereas racing in Birmingham.
“If I used to be going to have a end result like I did as we speak, now was the time to consider it and hopefully I’ve accomplished him proud.”