OLYMPICS LONDON 2012: Tancock adamant Britain's swimmers 'did well'
FRESH from a post-Olympic comedown Liam Tancock isn't buying into the label that the performance of Britain's swimmers at London 2012 was disappointing - rather insisting it was the opposite.
POSITIVE OUTLOOK: Liam Tancock believes there was no such disappointment for Britain's swimmers at London 2012
Britain's failure to equal their medal haul of six from Beijing 2008 and meet the target of five to seven set out by UK Sport - they won just three - will lead to a thorough review of what went wrong and why, with the sports funding likely to be cut.
However contrary to popular opinion Tancock, who was one swimmer many believed would climb the podium in London but finished agonisingly short in fifth in the 100m backstroke, declared the Games a success.
Tancock was one of 23 finalists in the Olympic Aquatics Centre while five of the 44-strong squad are still in their teens, the youngest of which, 16-year-old Siobhan-Marie O'Connor, swam in the women's 4x100m medley relay final.
With the next four-year Olympic cycle already underway Tancock - a two-time world 50m backstroke champion - fully expects the success of the next generation of inspired athletes to rely heavily on the quality of coaching.
And, despite the level of future funding unclear, Tancock is keeping the faith with what he believes to be a winning formula for British Swimming.
"What we have seen over the last few weeks has been incredible. We have produced a fantastic performance and hopefully we have inspired a generation," said Tancock - who is part of Gillette's campaign to encourage men to get into coaching.
"But people just cannot turn up with talent and win at Rio 2016 - they need to be in the right hands. Gillette are looking to inspire clubs to celebrate the great work they have done and inspire people to coach the Olympians of tomorrow.
"Without great coaching I would not be where I am today and the same goes for the rest of Team GB. This is the start of regeneration and it will all rely on great coaching.
"Future funding is out of my control but I believe the swimmers did well. Swimming didn't quite get the medals it deserved but a lot of us just missed out.
"On any given day anyone can win and it is a cut-throat world and what we are building on now is good for the future.
"We have seen the most finalists, which is a positive step, and in total we were third behind world-class company.
"With another four years we can do better as British Swimming is coming through nicely and we will be better and stronger and ready to go in what is a very tough sporting world.
"You cannot get good overnight and it is a long process but as long as the set-up is like this it will only grow and get stronger."
Tancock will take a short break before his immediate focus turns to next year's World Championships in Barcelona where he will look to defend his 50m backstroke title.
And, showing no signs of hanging up his goggles before Rio 2016, Tancock will return to Loughborough's Intensive Training Centre where he has blossomed from a winning mentality.
"I am fully focused on Rio. I am going to have a short break but I will be back and ready to go looking ahead to the World Championships in Barcelona," he added.
"I have been at Loughborough for nine years and have loved it all. You need to surround yourself with great coaching and other athletes chasing similar goals and that is why I chose it.
"I will be doing much of the same. I always look to improve on different things and try to find those tenths and hundredths of a second because I don't believe there is such a thing as the perfect race.
"I have been racing the same guys in the backstroke for years and years and in that final anyone could have won a medal. Next time I want it to be me."
Gillette is offering to fund coaching qualifications for men across the UK as part of the ‘Great Starts' campaign. To apply for a coaching grant visit Facebook.com/GilletteUK
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