A mainstay of Australia’s successful freestyle relay teams for almost a decade, Madison Wilson (swimming) delivered yet again in Birmingham with four gold medals: in the 4x100m and 4x200m freestyle (and a world record) as well as for heat swims in both mixed relay events. She also won bronze in 200m freestyle as part of an Australian trifecta with Ariarne Titmus and Mollie O’Callaghan. Birmingham was her second Commonwealth Games after she made the finals of all three backstroke events in Glasgow in 2014.
Born in Roma in western Queensland and raised in Yeppoon near Rockhampton, Madi’s parents would drive her to swim meets when she was young which were often in towns four or five hours away, so the family would camp for the weekend. Although she enjoyed netball, three broken arms convinced everyone that the pool was a safer bet. The 2014 World Short Course Championships was her breakthrough meet, claiming medals in two relays, before taking silver in the 100m backstroke at the 2015 World Championships in Kazan as well as another gold and bronze in relays.
More relay gold and silver followed at the Rio 2016 Olympics however she missed selection for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games which prompted a move to Adelaide to train under Peter Bishop. She then claimed gold as part of Australia’s world-record breaking 4x200m freestyle relay at the Gwangju 2019 world championships, then further relay gold and bronze at her second Olympics in Tokyo.
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