GWANGJU, South Korea (Reuters) – Much has changed for Joseph Schooling since the 2016 Rio Games, where he beat American great Michael Phelps in the 100 meters butterfly final to become Singapore’s first Olympic gold medalist.
Returning to the city-state from his Texas base earlier this year, the 24-year-old has swapped his carefree college days for living back at home with his parents, a huge transition that he says he is still trying to adjust to.
Friday - World - Gwangju - Extent - Schooling
On Friday at the world championships in Gwangju, the extent of Schooling’s slide down the butterfly pecking order was only too apparent. Finishing equal 24th fastest, Schooling clocked 52.93 to miss the semi-finals of his pet event.
His time was 2.54 seconds slower than in Rio, where he stunned the world and looked like he had the makings of a dominant butterfly champion.
Reality - Check
“This was a huge reality check of what I need to do moving forward,” he said.
“It’s been a big transition for me, moving back to Singapore. The last four months I’ve been put through a lot of things I’ve never been put through before. But it’s just a transition period and it’s a learning curve.”
Tokyo - Olympics - Year - Curve
With the Tokyo Olympics just a year away, Schooling must hope his learning curve starts to flatten out soon.
Phelps has long since retired but the emergence of American Caeleb Dressel and Hungary’s...
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