Dawson's delight as she wins Olympic swimming gold

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Media caption,

Dawson's delight as she wins Olympic swimming gold

Kathleen Dawson has said she was left "speechless" after becoming the first Scottish woman in nearly 70 years to win an Olympic medal in the pool.

The Kirkcaldy-born star was part of the Great Britain team which won the 4x100m mixed medley relay in a world-record time.

The 23-year-old said the "gravity of it all" had still to hit her.

Scotland's last female Olympic swimming medal came in 1952 when Helen Gordon took bronze in the 200m breaststroke.

Great Britain claimed its fourth swimming gold at the Tokyo Olympics when Dawson, Adam Peaty, James Guy and Anna Hopkin won in three minutes 37.58 seconds.

The victory came after Dawson slipped off the wall at the start of her backstroke leg before fighting back.

Speaking to BBC Scotland, Dawson said she couldn't have imagined this outcome in her "wildest dreams".

She said: "I can't quite believe it, a gold and a world record.

"I managed to focus on my own race and do the best I could do to get these guys in a position to fight for the gold medal.

"We knew we had a great opportunity but it was a case of, can we all come together and pull off the best swim we ever had."

Media caption,

Tokyo Olympics: GB win gold in mixed medley relay in world-record time

Dawson said preparations for Tokyo had been "up and down" due to Covid but issued a "big thank you" to the NHS for its part in allowing Team GB to get vaccinated and travel to Tokyo.

The backstroke specialist, who now lives and trains in Stirling, said she had spoken to her parents who were "absolutely buzzing".

She added: "It was 5am back there and they were already on the champagne - it was great to see."

The University of Stirling's Head Performance Swim Coach Steven Tigg, who is one of the Team GB coaches, said: "When I spoke to Kathleen after the race, she was still in a bit of shock - but being an Olympic champion and world record-breaker does that!"

"After her anterior cruciate ligament injury in 2018, this achievement may have seemed impossible. But the support in place within the programme, along with her determination, has culminated in her dream becoming a reality."

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