LONDON – This was not the way it was supposed to end.
Unable to reprise his semi-final appearance in the 200 metres individual medley, Barbadian swimmer Bradley Ally now faces a difficult decision sometime after the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Yesterday morning at the Aquatics Centre, Ally finished third in his heat in 2 minutes 00.85 seconds. It placed him 22nd out of 36 swimmers. Canadian Andrew Ford, who won the heat in 2:00.28 was the last swimmer to make it to the semis.
His qualifying time of 2:00.03 would have put him right in the hunt.
In Beijing four years ago, not only did Ally reach the second round, he was just shy of the final, setting a new national record.
“I was trying to compete and get in the semi-finals. It is unfortunate that didn’t happen, but it is a part of the game. Although you’re upset, you still have to be thankful for the experience of being at the Olympics,” he told NATIONSPORT.
Now in his third Olympic Games, the 25-year-old never sought to make excuses for his performances. He suffered from a bout of adrenal fatigue earlier in the season, and that was only diagnosed after he had resumed training.
When asked how far that could have set back his training, he answered: “Who knows? After coming back from France I was really tired and fatigued, so I went and got checked out and found I had it, but I don’t know exactly when I had it from.
“It is not in the races, but you definitely feel when you get older your body can’t handle the training load as it could before and I think that is a part of it, but I felt it in training mostly.
“And in the recovery, [it] is much longer than before,” he added.
Ally won his heat of the 400 metres individual medley in 4:21.34, taking three seconds off his qualifying time. He also won his heat of the men’s 100 metres backstroke in 56.27, but neither of those times earned a night swim.
He still has not made a decision about his future.
“I’m not trying to think about it too much, just trying to enjoy the time with my family here. When the time is right I will decide. I have no regrets. I love swimming,” Ally said.
“Swimming has been a part of my life for 21 years. I don’t regret anything. You meet new people, travel to a lot of places, so I would never regret it.”
It was also the end of the line for Jamaica’s Alia Atkinson who won her heat of the women’s 200m breaststroke in 2:28.77, 27th overall. She had placed fourth in the final of the 100m breaststroke earlier this week.
Guyana’s Britany van Lange also wrapped up her Olympic stint with a 1:01.62 in the women’s 100m freestyle, 42nd out of 48 starters.
However, the news was good for Bahamian Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace, who set a new national record of 53.73 seconds in the same event, down from the 54.28 she did to qualify for the semi-finals with the sixth fastest time.