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Comic Relief 2022: Tom Daley Reveals Fear of Open Water As He Raises £1,000,000 for Hell of a Homecoming Challenge

Tom Daley raised a huge amount (Picture: PA / Getty)

Tom Daley raised £1,027,111 for Comic Relief after his gruelling four-day Hell Of A Homecoming challenge, with the Olympic diver revealing he has an unexpected fear of water.

The challenge saw the Olympic gold-medallist row, swim, cycle and run 290 miles from London to his hometown of Plymoth in Devon.

On the first day, Tom’s boat capsized into freezing cold waters, and on day two he returned to the icy waters for a 1000m swim.

However, it appears the diver isn’t as comfortable in open waters as he is in the Olympic pool.

Hailing him a ‘hero’ for the amount he raised for Comic Relief, Alesha Dixon said to Tom: ‘We saw that being in cold water really freaks you out, which is so surprising seeing as you’ve spent most of your life in water.

‘You’re an Olympian so I think people presume it would be easy, but…’

Tom replied: ‘I dive into the pool and I swim to the side, that’s as much as my swimming gets.

‘Open water freaks me out. Like not knowing what’s underneath me and swimming open water – in a normal pool you can look down and you see the black lines – [in open water] you just see complete darkness underneath you.’

‘Open water freaks me out’ (Picture: Getty)

Tom was off to an icy start after his boat capsized on day one (Picture: Getty)

The 27-year-old added that the temperature was around 5.3 degrees Celsius when he was swimming, which ‘is about two or three degrees colder than what cold water comes out your tap at.’

‘And that’s never a good look in speedos,’ host Paddy McGuinness joked.

On BBC Breakfast earlier today, Tom said the Red Nose Day mission was ‘the toughest thing I have ever put my body through.’

He said: ‘I am feeling pretty rough, I am not going to lie.

‘I am at my mum’s house, so being looked after, but literally, when I got up to pee in the middle of the night, my husband actually had to carry me and help me because I can’t really walk.

‘It’s honestly the hardest thing that I have ever put my body through’ (Picture: Getty)

‘It’s honestly the hardest thing that I have ever put my body through, with all of the Olympic training that I have done, my diving lasts 1.6 seconds per dive, I have never done any kind of endurance training.

‘When they discussed what the challenge would be, I had no concept of how long it would take.’

Tom received a warm welcome after finishing his gruelling challenge (Picture: PA)

He added: ‘I couldn’t actually believe that I had done it. I think back to when I first started and I think I have just realised how far Plymouth is from London – on the train you don’t think about it, you’re there having your tea or coffee and snacks, but my goodness…’

The Olympian was cheered on by hundreds of supporters, family and friends during his mission, which he described as ‘really incredible’.

More: Tom Daley

Tom’s journey and all the action has been filmed for a special one-hour documentary which is due to air on BBC One and iPlayer in March.

Comic Relief is available to watch on BBC iPlayer.

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