Abbie Wood now one of the best in the world, says former Olympian Mark Foster

Buxton’s Abbie Wood has progressed to become one of the world’s best female swimmers over the last year, according to former Team GB Olympian Mark Foster.

Wednesday, 28th July 2021, 11:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 28th July 2021, 11:20 am
Buxton's Abbie Wood has so far reached two finals in Tokyo, with a third potentially upcoming in the breaststroke.

Speaking after seeing Wood just miss out on a medal in the 200m individual medley final in Tokyo on Wednesday, Foster felt Wood gave as good as she got for much of the race, only missing out on a medal by a tiny margin.

But he says Wood’s progress in the last year has seen her become a real contender for top honours both in Tokyo and at the Paris Olympics in 2024.

He said: “I’m gutted for Abbie but at the same time she put herself in a good position and swam her best time – you can’t ask any more of yourself in the moment.

“In that pressure pot she did her best time and her strokes looked good. Yui Ohashi [race winner] had played through the rounds a bit and seemed to leave a little bit for that final and the Americans are always going to fight to the end, but fourth place is good.

“It could have been gold, silver or bronze. She’s got a great breaststroke but then they all have – they’re the world’s best swimmers for a reason – and her freestyle is solid too and she had a good split in the relay.

“She’s got it all, all of the four strokes. It just came down to a tight finish in the end - 0.6 seconds between the top four says it all.

“She’s a name that was not known a while ago but over the last year, in a very difficult period, she’s taken herself to be one of the best in the world.”