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Dejected swimmer Rice faces character test
By Steve Larkin
08:35 AEST Sun Jul 29 2012

Shattered swimmer Stephanie Rice says she faces her biggest character test if she is to rebound from losing her Olympic 400m individual medley crown.

Rice says she has no excuses for finishing sixth in Saturday night's final at the London Games, but hopes Australians don't feel let down by her swim.

Rice, on the verge of tears, says she can't wallow in disappointment too long given her 200m medley campaign starts Monday.

"It is always hard to start the meet off with little bit of disappointment and bring it back up," Rice said.

"So it's going to be a real test of character more than anything."

Rice not only lost her Olympic title, but also her 400m medley world record - China's 16-year-old sensation Ye Shiwen won Saturday night's final in 4m28.43s, more than one second quicker than Rice's old world best mark.

Shiwen's milestone was only the third world record broken since supersuits were banned in 2010.

Rice, whose London campaign has been hampered by serious injury to her right shoulder, clocked 4m35.49s.

"I can't make excuses," she said.

"I would have loved to have gone faster and loved to have done better.

"More than anything, I hope I haven't let anyone down."

At least she was satisfied with trying to overcome her injury-plagued preparation.

"More than anything, I'm not walking away with any regrets," Rice said.

"I just had nothing left at the end of that race.

"I knew it was going to be hard but I didn't think I would go as slow as I did."

The 24-year-old maintained the 200m medley - an event she is also the defending Olympic champion - was her best chance of a medal in London.

"The training I have done has definitely been more geared towards the 200 because I haven't been able to get in the training and the fitness stuff for the 400," she said.

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