Ulyett vows to use heartbreak of World Championship defeat

Jocelyn Ulyett
Jocelyn Ulyett

Missing out on a maiden World Championship final by one hundredth of a second can be a bitter pill to swallow but Jocelyn Ulyett was determined to take it in her stride, instead using the heartbreak as a learning experience for future competitions.

The 21-year-old has come to national prominence this year after beating seasoned Great Britain campaigner Molly Renshaw in the 200m breaststroke at April’s British Championships.

That British record-breaking performance secured her a place on the plane to Budapest for this week’s global gathering and she got her first taste of World Championship action in Thursday’s breaststroke heats, where she was 14th fastest.

Moving into the evening semi-finals she dropped her time again, this time by nearly three seconds to touch the wall in 2:23.82.

But with 100m breaststroke world champion Lilly King going 0.01 seconds faster, Ulyett narrowly missed out on the medal race – which will incidentally include British teammate Renshaw.

But while disappointed not to go a step further, Ulyett could still take plenty of positives out of her meet in the Hungarian capital, particularly when it comes to controlling her emotions.

“I just wanted to focus on myself and my own race in the semi-final,” she said.

“In the morning the nerves definitely got the better of me so tonight I just wanted to focus on myself, be in my own lane and see what happened.

“I’m really happy with that. I knew I would be able to go faster and I did.

“I know I’m in a good place physically. I think this meet was all about mental toughness and getting used to the environment.

“It will be a valuable lesson missing out on the final like that but I’m still chuffed with my performance and I’m just so grateful to be here.”

>> You can help the next generation of young British swimmers by getting involved in SportsAid Week this September with five-time Paralympic champion Ellie Simmonds OBE. Find out more about how you can support the week of fun and fundraising by visiting www.sportsaid.org.uk/sportsaidweek.