Sport Swimming Open Water: Muller, from Rio to Tokyo, the...

Swimming Open Water: Muller, from Rio to Tokyo, the Olympic curse


Yeosu (South Korea) – The Olympic grand-mass is definitely refusing her: Aurélie Muller has missed her qualification for the Olympics-2020 very narrowly by failing to rank among the top ten of the 10km open water at the Championships swimming world, Yeosu (South Korea) Sunday morning.

A claim brought by the France team was still in progress at midday, but it had already been rejected a first time, said the tricolor AFP.

You have to go back in time to tell the annoyed Olympic story of Muller (29).

At Rio 2016, in the idyllic bay of Copacabana, the student of Philippe Lucas, the former mentor of Laure Manaudou, had a nightmare: she was disqualified from the 10 km in open water and deprived of medal money for having a hand on the head of a competitor in the last few meters of race. Aurélie Muller had since made the rendezvous Tokyo next summer his horizon to change the course of his Olympic destiny.

– Eleventh for a tenth –

But in South Korean waters Sunday, it is for a place and a tenth that this ticket so coveted for Tokyo escapes him. This 10 km world was the only opportunity to qualify two swimmers from the same country for the only Olympic race in open water, provided to finish in the top 10. What has succeeded the other French in the running, Lara Grangeon , fourth (1h54: 50) and so on the way for the Olympics 2020. But not Muller, finally eleventh, to only one tenth of tenth, obtained by the Olympic champion Sharon van Rouwendaal.

A classification that was only official after a stifling wait of twenty minutes in the sultry Yeosu, partly spent hands on the hips for her, crossed behind the head for the boss of the free water tricolor Stéphane Lecat.

The last hope of the double world champion of the 10 km (2015 and 2017) resides in the French claim concerning the Italian Rachele Bruni, bronze medalist and to which it is reproached a "anti-sporting gesture"in this case, to be"leaning on the legs"from Muller"150 m from the finish"explained the tricolor.

China's Xin Xin won (1h54: 47.2) ahead of American Haley Anderson (1h54: 48.1) and Bruni (1h54: 49.9).

Irony of the story, three years ago in Rio, it is a gesture against Bruni, already, with which she was elbow-to-the-elbow in the final sprint, which had caused its disqualification.

The painful Carioca episode was over, Muller had kept the world crown of the 10 km, and had even matched the money of the 5 km and gold relay 5 km mixed team, at the World-2017 swam in the Lake Balaton, Hungary. Then she slowed down the pace of a season to focus on her dietary studies. Back in training at full speed last September with the Olympics-2020 in mind, his sporting future is now dotted.


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