US swimmer Michael Phelps has taken his overall Olympic medal tally to 25. Twenty one of those are gold. Phelps added 2 golds to his kitty on Tuesday. He recaptured the top spot in his signature 200 metres butterfly event, and also won the 4×200 freestyle relay.
The American crushed his rival Chad le Clos to regain his 200 metres butterfly title and become the oldest individual swimming gold medallist in Olympic history at 31.
The most decorated athlete in Olympic history, clocked 1min 53.36 sec to take the gold. Japan’s Masato Sakai came through for a surprise silver in 1:53.40 and Hungary’s Tamas Kenderesi took bronze in 1:53.62. Chad le Clos failed to make it to the top three spots.
Phelps’ victory was double sweet because he defeated South African le Clos, who gave him a humiliating defeat in their epic clash at London 2012 Olympics. In his fifth and final Olympics, Phelps managed to snatch back the title.
In London the South African had won by a narrow margin to rob the American of a hat-trick of titles. Phelps and le Clos had also been engaged in a war of words in the media since London 2012.
Phelps celebrated his victory by pointing to the sky and gesturing to the Rio crowd to “bring the noise”, an order they duly obeyed.
Phelps climbed past the poolside photographers to kiss fiancee Nicole and baby Boomer after an emotional medals ceremony.
By Tuesday midnight Phelps put the finishing touch to an easy win in the 4x200m free, cruising home almost two and a half seconds ahead of Britain’s James Guy in the 4×200 freestyle relay, taking his overall tally to a historic 21.
At Rio, the American has already bagged 3 gold medals. On Monday, Phelps won his 19th Olympic gold in the men’s 4x100m freestyle relay. But Phelps still has more potential gold for him in the 100m fly and the 200m individual medley – events which he has incredibly won in the past three Olympics.
(With inputs from agencies)