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Final day of destiny as McKeon targets record medal haul

Gorokhovskaya’s haul of two golds and five silvers in Helsinki (1952) has stood for 69 years.

McKeon’s consistency has been remarkable and her ability to back up for races was no more impressive than on Saturday.

Moments after swimming 24 seconds flat in her semi-final of the 50m freestyle, McKeon was still in the warm-up pool when the mixed relay teams made their way out for the final.

“It was like a six-minute break, which sounds pretty quick but we train for that,” McKeon said on Seven.

Backstroker Kaylee McKeown later explained how much of an inspiration McKeon has been.

“It lifts the whole group. The Australian team has really come together,” McKeown said.

“To see Emma do what she does is absolutely incredible. Personally, I wouldn’t be able to back up and swim as well as she is doing. It’s a real testament to her as well.”

In terms of overall medals across multiple Olympics, McKeon now has nine – the same number as Thorpe and Leisel Jones, who hold the Australian record.

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All things going well, McKeon could finish with 11.

“I don’t look at those stats … but I’m honoured to be up there with them,” McKeon said.

Australia’s likely team for the women’s 4x100m medley is McKeown, Chelsea Hodges, McKeon and Cate Campbell. They are the third fastest qualifiers (3:55.39), just behind Canada (3:55.17) and the USA (3:55.18).

Meanwhile, Australia’s men will start in lane seven for the last event on the swimming program with a team likely to feature Mitch Larkin, Zac Stubblety-Cook, Matt Temple and Kyle Chalmers.

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