Kyle Chalmers gestures after winning gold in the 100m freestyle at the Commonwealth Games

Chalmers put his fingers to his lips in a gesture that suggested he was silencing his critics after taking gold in the 100m freestyle at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on Tuesday


Kyle Chalmers has explained his powerful post-race gesture after winning gold at the Commonwealth Games as he continues to lash out at the Australian media. 

Chalmers put his fingers to his lips in a gesture that suggested he was silencing his critics after taking gold in the 100m freestyle at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on Tuesday. 

The pointed gesture comes as the 24-year-old continues to hit back at rumours he’s embroiled in a love triangle with Cody Simpson and his ex-flame Emma McKeon.

In a post-race interview, Chalmers said he had been planning the celebration before he had even made it to the blocks and gave an insight into his mental state. 

‘It’s something I’ve envisaged myself doing, probably a bit more of a powerful celebration after a win, but that one was a special one,’ Chalmers said. 

‘That probably means more than giving it a fist bump or a tensing of the muscles. I hope that sends a powerful message.’

Chalmers put his fingers to his lips in a gesture that suggested he was silencing his critics after taking gold in the 100m freestyle at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on Tuesday

Chalmers put his fingers to his lips in a gesture that suggested he was silencing his critics after taking gold in the 100m freestyle at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on Tuesday

Chalmers has threatened to quit swimming if 'false news' continued to circulate that he was in a love triangle rift with Cody Simpson and his ex-flame Emma McKeon (pictured)

Chalmers has threatened to quit swimming if ‘false news’ continued to circulate that he was in a love triangle rift with Cody Simpson and his ex-flame Emma McKeon (pictured)

The swimmer admitted it was difficult to enjoy his third gold of the meet amid the ‘false’ headlines he said have overshadowed his team’s achievements. 

‘It is special to win but unfortunately I think it is hard to enjoy the moment when all that has happened has gone on,’ he told Channel 7’s Cate Campbell. 

He said there were moments he had felt like he ‘could not continue on’ and said he hoped his latest win was ‘a learning point for everybody’ – including the media. 

‘The past 48 hours have been hell, a rollercoaster. I was even speaking to my coach before the race and I almost started crying and I’m not an emotional person,’ the swimmer said. 

‘I was hoping to be on the next flight out of here, but I’ve still got a job to do in the relays for my country and I look forward to doing that.’

Chalmers couldn’t confirm if he would compete at the 2024 Olympics in Paris after his spat with the media – despite it being his ‘dream’ to win gold in France. 

The pointed gesture (pictured) comes as the 24-year-old continues to hit back at rumours he's involved in a love triangle with Cody Simpson and his ex-flame Emma McKeon

The pointed gesture (pictured) comes as the 24-year-old continues to hit back at rumours he’s involved in a love triangle with Cody Simpson and his ex-flame Emma McKeon

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Kyle Chalmers has made a series of fiery Instagram posts following his outburst at a press conference where he slammed the media and their negative coverage of him

Kyle Chalmers has made a series of fiery Instagram posts following his outburst at a press conference where he slammed the media and their negative coverage of him

‘I definitely want to. That’s been my dream to win in Paris,’ he said. 

‘But if I have to keep going through a similar thing I won’t last until Paris, I know that. It’s too challenging and not something I swim for. I know I stand here bravely, but this has really set me back a lot. I really don’t know what’s next for me.’

Speaking at a press conference on Sunday, Chalmers threatened to quit swimming if ‘false news’ continued to circulate that he was in a feud with the couple. 

Rumours of the rift have followed the Australian team as they compete in the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham with Chalmers and his teammates taking home gold in the 4x100m freestyle mixed relay and 4x100m freestyle relay. 

Chalmers continued his attack on social media claiming the negative attention had taken a toll on his teammates and stolen the spotlight from their achievements.  

‘Media hurts more then [sic] people realise, only so much we can take before enough is enough,’ he wrote.

Chalmers continued his attack on social media claiming the negative attention had taken a toll on his teammates and stolen the spotlight from their achievements

Chalmers continued his attack on social media claiming the negative attention had taken a toll on his teammates and stolen the spotlight from their achievements

‘What should have been a very special night with my team has ended up being my least favourite in my sport.

‘Thank you media for ruining it for us all. Hope you’re all happy, sleeping well while we lay here sleepless and upset.’ 

He added he was grateful for ‘those who work in the media that stand by my side and write the truth’.

‘They are the only ones I will be talking to from here on out,’ he wrote.

The comments add to a lengthy Instagram post attacking the ‘false headlines’ and threatening to pull out of swimming if they continued.

‘But do you know what it does to the humans you write about?’ he wrote.

‘It breaks them down little by little, and tonight is the breaking point. Up until this point I’ve tried to just keep on moving forward but tonight I ask that you please stop writing these false headlines otherwise my time in the sport will be finished. 

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'Thank you media for ruining it for us all. Hope you're all happy, sleeping well while we lay here sleepless and upset,' Chalmers wrote (pictured, Chalmers, Williams Xu Yang, Zac Incerti and Flynn Southam following their 4x100m freestyle relay win)

‘Thank you media for ruining it for us all. Hope you’re all happy, sleeping well while we lay here sleepless and upset,’ Chalmers wrote (pictured, Chalmers, Williams Xu Yang, Zac Incerti and Flynn Southam following their 4x100m freestyle relay win)

‘I don’t swim for this, I didn’t get into the sport to have to deal with this. I swim to inspire and I swim because I love my sport and it gives me purpose. 

‘This could end my time in swimming, I hope you are all aware. My mental health right now from all of this over the months is at rock bottom, I really hope that pleases the key board warriors that continue to write false news.’

Chalmers dated McKeon for a short time last year before the pair broke up and McKeon moved on with Simpson.

The three swimmers are now competing at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. 

Chalmers insisted during the press conference there were no divisions in the Australian team labelling the rumours as ‘false news’ and saying the reports had impacted his mental health. 

‘It’s all just false news that is actually just crap, it’s honestly just a load of s*** that is not true,’ Chalmers said.

A fired-up Kyle Chalmers has dismissed rumours of a rift between him and his ex-flame Emma McKeon and her new boyfriend Cody Simpson during a heated press conference

A fired-up Kyle Chalmers has dismissed rumours of a rift between him and his ex-flame Emma McKeon and her new boyfriend Cody Simpson during a heated press conference

The swim star has also denied rumours of a rift with McKeon following their awkward chemistry during the 4x100m freestyle mixed relay on Friday

The swim star has also denied rumours of a rift with McKeon following their awkward chemistry during the 4x100m freestyle mixed relay on Friday

The swim star has also denied rumours of a rift with McKeon following their awkward chemistry during the 4x100m freestyle mixed relay on Friday.

Australia were the only nation not to hold hands and raise them in unison pre-race while Chalmers was the only teammate who was not seen shaking McKeon’s hand following their win.

He shut down reports he did not congratulate his ex-flame following the victory. 

‘Did you watch the whole race? I said congratulations and we (McKeon) stood here right alongside you guys and spoke last night,’ he said.

‘I find that really hard to believe that I didn’t say congratulations after the race. I actually walked up and said ‘good job’ across the pool. 

‘We all said congratulations, we all did what we had to do and it’s an honour to be part of that team last night and win the first gold medal in the race at the Commonwealth Games and to do it with Australia’s most successful Olympian and now Australia’s most successful Commonwealth Games athlete is special.’

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Chalmers said he has a good relationship with Simpson and texted him congratulations after the Australian men’s 4x100m freestyle team win on Saturday. 

Chalmers dated McKeon for a short time last year before the pair broke up and McKeon moved on with Simpson

Chalmers dated McKeon for a short time last year before the pair broke up and McKeon moved on with Simpson

‘I said good luck to Cody, I said good job to Cody, I sent him a message after the race,’ Chalmers said.

‘I do nothing but be as positive as I possibly can. I support him on the team but, again, people just want clickbait on the article.

‘It’s unfortunate that I can’t do anything right at this point in time.

‘I think it’s fantastic that he’s here .. it’s fantastic for our sport, it brings new viewers in. What he has achieved in two years of swimming is incredible.’

At the national trials back in April, Chalmers announced he would take up 50m butterfly for the Commonwealth Games – the same event that Simpson was attempting to qualify for.

Some spectators felt Chalmers was perhaps trying to deliberately quash the dreams of Simpson, whose return to the pool after he was a child prodigy in Queensland has seen him become a constant talking point.

Chalmers said he has a good relationship with Simpson and texted him congratulations after the Australian men's 4x100m freestyle team win on Saturday

Chalmers said he has a good relationship with Simpson and texted him congratulations after the Australian men’s 4x100m freestyle team win on Saturday

Chalmers turned on the media saying the criticism had made him seriously reconsider his future in the sport.

‘In every other sport, people say they have mental health problems and people jump on board and want to support them,’ he said.

‘[In] swimming, everyone still wanted to roast me. I go back home to Port Lincoln, I come back to Adelaide and there are people taking photos of me saying ‘Kyle resurfaces’.

‘It’s not focused on mental health, it’s focused on bringing me back down. You guys don’t actually realise the impact you have on athletes when we’re standing up to not only perform for ourselves but our countries. You guys can affect that a lot.’

Chalmers shut down reports he did not congratulate his ex-flame following their victory in the mixed 4x100m freestyle mixed relay (Cody Simpson pictured with girlfriend Emma McKeon)

Chalmers shut down reports he did not congratulate his ex-flame following their victory in the mixed 4x100m freestyle mixed relay (Cody Simpson pictured with girlfriend Emma McKeon)



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