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Lochte fifth on return from suspension

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August 07, 2017

Ryan Lochte swims on the way to a fifth-place finish in the men's 100-meter backstroke Saturday, Aug. 5, 2017, at the U.S. Open in East Meadow, N.Y. (Richard T. Slattery/Newsday via AP)

A frame from surveillance video released by Brazil Police, swimmer Ryan Lochte, second from right, of the United States, and teammates, appear at a gas station during the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. A top Brazil police official said the swimmers damaged property at the gas station. (Brazil Police via AP).

Ryan Lochte has finished fifth in the men’s 100m backstroke final at the US Open on Saturday, after serving a 10-month suspension for his behaviour at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

Arkady Vyatchanin was first with a time of 53.91, followed by Christopher Reid (54.54) and Xavier Mohammed (54.62).

Lochte was to swim in the 200m individual medley yesterday, where he is the top seed.

The week-long event at the Nassau County Aquatic Centre is serving as Lochte’s first recognised competitive meet following an incident at the Rio Olympics.

After a night out with teammates Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger and James Feigen, Lochte claimed in an interview with NBC that athletes had been robbed at gunpoint after their taxi was pulled over.

In a subsequent interview with NBC, Lochte said he ‘‘over-exaggerated’’ the incident.

However, Brazilian authorities citing videotape evidence revealed the swimmers were confronted by security personnel after destroying a gas station bathroom.

Lochte eventually posted a mea culpa on his Twitter account.

Last September, USA Swimming and the United States Olympic Committee announced Lochte was suspended for 10 months and would be fined $100000 for his role, which cost him sponsorships with Speedo, Ralph Lauren, Airweave and Gentle Hair Removal.

A Brazilian appellate court in July dismissed criminal charges against Lochte, saying he did not break the law because the swimmer’s claims to NBC were not equal to filing a false police report.

Lochte, 33, is eying a spot on the 2020 Olympic team.

He has won six Olympic gold medals while representing the US at the past four Olympics.

He will turn 36 during the 2020 Summer Olympics, which will be in Tokyo.

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