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Michael Phelps Ties Olympic Medal Record, Takes Silver In Men's 200m Butterfly Final

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Michael Phelps competes in a men's 200-meter butterfly swimming semifinal at the Aquatics Centre in the Olympic Park during the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, Monday, July 30, 2012. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Michael Phelps competes in a men's 200-meter butterfly swimming semifinal at the Aquatics Centre in the Olympic Park during the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, Monday, July 30, 2012. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Michael Phelps may have just missed out on the gold medal in the 200-meter butterfly but he does have quite a nice consolation prize. His silver medal ties him for the most career Olympic medals (18) of all time with with Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina.

Despite leading the race with just three meters remaining, Phelps was beaten to the wall by Chad Le Clos of South Africa. Clos took gold in 1:52:96, with Phelps finishing just behind at 1:53:01. Bronze went to Takeshi Matsuda, who finished in 1:53:21.

Heading in to the final turn of the race, Phelps held a lead and seemed in command. However, he was overtaken late by Le Clos as he seemed to lose his stroke consistency over the final meters. Considered his signature event, Phelps was a heavy favorite to capture his third gold (2004, 2008) in the 200-meter fly.

Although Phelps' silver tied him for the largest overall medal haul ever, he hardly seemed in a celebratory mood when the race ended. Phelps tossed his cap as Le Clos celebrated his come-from-behind win. Entering the race, Phelps was making a bid to become the first male swimmer to win the same individual event in three straight Olympics. Phelps is currently 0 for 2 in three-peat attempts, having failed to even medal in the 400-meter individual medley.

Thus far, Phelps has two silver medals in 2012. His next chance at gold -- and to become the most decorated Olympian of all time -- comes shortly after the 200-meter butterfly when Phelps is set to participate in the 4x200-meter freestyle relay.

UPDATE: Michael Phelps is now the most decorated Olympian of all time after the U.S. men's team won gold in the 4X200 freestyle relay. Phelps now has 19 medals, 15 of which are gold.

 
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