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All-too-familiar fourth place for Andrew Willis

Team Bath swimmer Andrew Willis has a history of finishing fourth Credit: PA

Great Britain's Andrew Willis said ruefully that four must be his lucky number after another agonising near miss.

The 25-year-old, who trains at the University of Bath, added to Britain's growing tally of fourth-placed finishes by only eight hundredths of a second in the final of the 200 metres breaststroke.

This is not his first experience of coming fourth

  • Fourth place at the Olympics
  • Fourth place - twice - at the World Championships
  • Fourth place at the European Championships

I feel like when I do finish swimming, four will be my lucky number. But I gave it everything and I wouldn't change anything.

– Andrew Willis
Team Bath's Andrew Willis ended up in that notorious fourth place in the 200m Breaststroke Final at Rio Credit: PA

Willis went into the final as the second-fastest qualifier behind Japan's Ippei Watanabe and was gaining with every stroke coming down the final length. But he was touched out, with Kazakhstan's Dmitriy Balandin winning gold ahead of Josh Prenot of the United States and Russia's Anton Chupkov.

Willis' time of two minutes 07.78 seconds in fourth was just 0.05 seconds behind the personal best he set in the semi-finals on Tuesday, which had raised hopes of a fifth British swimming medal.

I touched and I knew I was up there. When you touch and you look around it seems to take forever. I'm just a bit gutted.

I was definitely happy with the time and I knew it was there or thereabouts. (The gap) is nothing and that's what makes it so much harder.

– Andrew Willis

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