KATHLEEN DAWSON is hoping to inspire the next generation of female swimmers after helping to win a gold medal and new world record in Tokyo.

Dawson, alongside Anna Hopkin, Adam Peaty and James Guy, won the Mixed 4x100m Medley Relay with a world record time of 3min 37.58sec earlier this week.

Speaking after her win, Dawson said: “It's amazing just to see us girls come through, especially here in what was such a male-dominated sport.

“So I'm really proud of us. And hopefully, that's an inspiration for the next generation of female swimmers coming through.”

The University of Stirling swimmer overcame a serious injury in 2018 to win Team GB’s fourth Gold medal of the week.

Steven Tigg, head performance swim coach at the University of Stirling, is in Tokyo supporting the Team GB swimmers and paid tribute to Kathleen's outstanding achievement.

He said: “Kathleen has been so steady in this championship – she has carried herself impeccably, despite struggling with a slight injury in the lead up and during the meet.

“It has been so impressive to see.

“After her anterior cruciate ligament injury in 2018, this achievement may have seemed impossible.

“But the support in place within the programme, along with her determination, has culminated in her dream becoming a reality.

“When I spoke to Kathleen after the race, she was still in a bit of shock – but being an Olympic champion and world record breaker does that.”

Looking back on the race, he continued: “The Mixed Medley is a really exciting event. I have been fortunate to lead the GB team since 2017 and we have just enough pieces to complete the puzzle, as well as some amazing back up athletes.

“China and the USA led off with two incredibly strong males either side of us and Kathleen had to stand her ground and not be fazed or bullied – it's her lane and she controls what happens in it.”

Cathy Gallagher, executive director of sport at the University of Stirling, added: “I am absolutely delighted by Kathleen Dawson’s outstanding achievement in Tokyo.

“Kathleen led her team out in the first leg with great determination and professionalism – with China and the United States applying pressure in the neighbouring lanes – before her teammates put in equally impressive performances to bring home the gold for Team GB.

“I offer Kathleen, Adam Peaty, James Guy and Anna Hopkin our warmest congratulations from the University of Stirling.

“Kathleen's success, combined with Duncan Scott's podiums earlier in the week, takes the University of Stirling's medal tally at the Games to four – an outstanding and well-deserved return that reflects the success of our high performance swim programme, led by Steve Tigg and his team.”