Cate Campbell’s Warning: ‘Don’t Write Off Sarah Sjostrom, Do That At Your Peril’

Cate Campbell in Relay Competition, Swimming Australia National Event Camp, Olympic Relays Simulation, Bond University Aquatic Centre, February 9 2021. Pic by Delly Carr / Swimming Australia. Pic credit mandatory for complimentary use.
TOP TWO: Cate Campbell and Emma McKeon ready for action on the Gold Coast yesterday.Photo Courtesy Delly carr (Swimming Australia).

Cate Campbell has warned the swimming world not to count Sarah Sjostrom out of this year’s Tokyo Games despite the Olympic champion’s devastating fall and subsequent elbow surgery.

The 27-year-old will face up to three months in recovery as she faces a race against time to be ready to defend her Rio 100m butterfly crown.


SWEDEN’S GOLD GIRL OF THE POOL: Sarah Sjostrom “as tough as they come” says Cate Campbell Photo Courtesy: SIPA USA

Sjostrom is one of Sweden’s greatest ever swimmers – winning three medals in 2016 – adding silver in the 200m freestyle and bronze in the 100m freestyle which saw Campbell miss the medals – and she remains the girl to beat for Campbell, her sister Bronte Campbell and Emma McKeon.

But it was Sjostrom and Jeanette Ottesen (Denmark) who comforted Campbell, who was sixth in a final shared by American Simone Manuel and Canada’s Penny Oleksiak – a show of true sportsmanship and the amazing bond between the world’s best sprinters and it played out on the world’s biggest sporting stage.

Sweden’s team doctor Rene Tour warned that a full recovery may take at least three months putting her Olympic 100 fly defence in doubt.

The Swede sustained the injury to her right elbow when she slipped on ice on her way to Reimersholme, south of Stockholm, on Saturday and she was quickly transported to hospital where the fracture was diagnosed.

On Monday she was operated on at Sankt Göran Hospital during which screws and a metal plate were inserted.

Sarah Sjostrom: Recovery Will Take Three Months Following Elbow Surgery

Campbell was quick to praise her respected rival saying at the Australian Dolphins Relay Blitz Meet at Bond University of the Gold Coast yesterday: “I saw a pale faced Sarah with her arm in a cast and my heart just dropped for her.

“It was devastating really….but you can never count Sarah out ‘do that at your own peril’ and if she needed any extra motivation to get back she will get there… she’s as tough as they (come) and I wish her all the best.

“Thank goodness they don’t have ice (where we live) in Australia…..It isn’t a final without Sarah Sjostrom in it but just heart-breaking for her.

“I know she will do everything in her power to get back; we try and look for meanings but sometimes life just doesn’t go you way.

“It’s a wake up call for everybody of just how privileged we are in a position we’re in to qualify for an Olympic team because it can literally change in the blink of an eye…”

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1 year ago

To give credit where credit is due, the Dane who comforted Campbell after the Rio 100m free final was Jeanette Ottesen, not Pernille Blume.