Aussie superstar Emma McKeon is on the path to greatness.
With the likes of Ariarne Titmus and Kaylee McKeown dominating proceedings, McKeon has set up a massive program that could see her smash all kinds of records.
After her first swim of the meet was overshadowed by a touch pad dead heat controversy, McKeon has won bronze in the 100m butterfly — in an Australian record time, no less — and gold as part of the stunning performance by our 4x100m freestyle relay team.
Her time in that event of 51.35 seconds was the fifth fastest split in history.
The no nonsense superstar could bring home seven medals from Tokyo, which would be the biggest ever haul by an Aussie.
Seven would equal the most medals won by a woman at an Olympics, after Soviet Union gymnast Maria Gorokhovskaya had a wild time at the 1952 Games.
The trend of McKeon breaking records continued in the 100m freestyle heats on Wednesday night, with the Aussie star breaking the Olympic record so effortlessly that nine-time Olympic medallist Leisel Jones was left stunned as McKeon cruised into the wall.
“That was probably the easiest Olympic record I’ve seen,” Jones said in commentary for Channel 7. “She’s not even puffing. Look at that. Not even sucking any oxygen at all. That was super cruisy and the fastest time. She’s put the world on notice.”
McKeon said she’d had a day off and was feeling good as she continued to be humble in front of the camera.
“Yeah, I’m pretty happy with that,” McKeon said. “An Olympic record is pretty cool. But I guess I had yesterday off and this morning off, so I think it freshened me up a bit.
McKeon was fastest, while compatriot Cate Campbellwas fourth fastest heading into the semi-finals.
McKeon also has the 50m freestyle and 4x200m freestyle relay on her program. She also looks like racing in the mixed 4x100m relay and women’s 4x100m medley relay, likely doing the butterfly.
That gives her seven medal opportunities.
It’s something Aussie legend Ian Thorpe believes is a real possibility.
“So the 50m is a toss of the coin, I can’t call that one at all,” he said. “The 100 I think she medals and she’s in good form. She has the fastest time in the world.
“But, of course, she’s up against Cate Campbell and the likes of the best competitors in the world. So that one’s a tough one to call as well but I think she will medal in that.
“When it comes to our relays, our women’s team is swimming exceptionally well. So when it comes to the mixed medley and relays, they are all medal prospects.”