Ian Thorpe's chances of London Olympic qualification have plummeted after he failed to qualify for Saturday night's 200m freestyle final at selection trials in Adelaide.
Thorpe faded late in his semi-final, clocking one minute 49.91 seconds to finish sixth in the race and only managing 12th fastest time to miss out on the eight-man final.
The 200m was considered Thorpe's best chance at qualification and his hopes now ride on finishing top six in a strong field for the 100m freestyle, starting on Sunday.
"I'm terribly disappointed with that. I thought I could and I thought I would swim a lot quicker, much quicker," Thorpe said.
"... The fairy tale has descended into a nightmare."
ninemsn.com.au 16 Mar 2012
What a joke and an absolute media hype riding on fat and unfit Thorpe.
There never was any real hope of him getting there.
It never really was a 'fairy tale', just false expectations.