It was always going to take a monumental effort, and Australia’s women left nothing in the tank to finish second in the 4x200m freestyle relay final.
A late change to the team saw Madeline Groves drop out to recover after winning silver in the 200m butterfly final.
That gave 17-year-old Tamsin Cook her biggest moment, stepping in to race alongside Bronte Barratt, Emma McKeon and Leah Neale.
After entering the second leg in seventh, a sensational swim from McKeon pulled Australia right into contention, reeling back the field to hand over a lead to Barratt.
Barratt held the lead and left it up to the Cook to hold off Katie Ledecky, but Ledecky showed why she’s the world and Olympic champion, taking the lead by the end of the first lap and holding it.
Cook held on a body length behind however, and courageously held off the Canadians to grab Australia’s second silver of the day.
Earlier, Australia scored its third swim gold after 18-year-old Kyle Chalmers’ shock win in the men’s 100m freestyle.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.