DIANELLA rower Rhys Grant will come back to Perth with a ninth overall ranking in the men’s singles sculls regatta after storming into third place in the B final.
The West Australian Rowing Club member, who narrowly missed out on a place in the A final, fought his heart out against strong competition on Saturday.
Grant (29) continued his run of very fast starts in the consolation race and stuck with a pack of three rowers in the early stages.
Egyptian Abdel Khalek Elbana in lane two dealt with the tail winds the best and led by a boat length at the end of lap one, as Grant settled for fourth.
In the second lap, the Egyptian rower extended his lead while Grant, Poland’s Natan Węgrzycki-Szymczyk and Mexico’s Juan Carlos Cabrera were engaged in a tight tussle.
Grant remained in fourth place, close behind Węgrzycki-Szymczyk and Cabrera at the end of the second lap.
The Australian, nicknamed ‘The President’, kept on pushing in the third while Węgrzycki-Szymczyk made his case for first place against Elbana.
Grant started to fade early in the final lap but dug deep and overtook Elbana who succumbed from first to fourth.
A stunning final lap saw Węgrzycki-Szymczyk finish first with a time of 6:47.95 ahead of Cabrera (6:50.02) and Dianella hero Grant (6:51.90).
Grant’s fairytale run at his first Olympic Games ended on a high as he recorded his fastest time of the week.