LONDON: Pool or lake, it makes no difference to Ous Mellouli. As long as there's water involved.
The Tunisian won the gruelling 10-kilometre race at the London Games yesterday to become the first swimmer to win medals in both the pool and open water at the same Olympics.
Having earned bronze in the 1,500-metre freestyle last week, Mellouli pulled away from a small group of leaders in the fifth of six laps and won in 1 hour, 49 minutes, 55.1 seconds in the murky waters of the Serpentine in Hyde Park.
It was the second gold of Mellouli's Olympic career. He won the 1,500 at the 2008 Beijing Games.
"Nothing compares to this," Mellouli said. "There's no way I can top this achievement."
Mellouli overcame shoulder and elbow injuries before the games, plus a virus two days ago. Now, he's considering retirement.
"Only those close to me know how much I struggled to get here today," Mellouli said.
"I don't think there's a better way to go out than this. I can just leave it all behind and have no regrets."
After pulling himself up on to the makeshift finishing dock, Mellouli flexed his muscles, beat his chest and let out a few screams marking Tunisia's first victory of the games.