JOSEF Craig may have missed out on the Paralympic podium for the second successive final but with friends in high places he’s certain success lies just around the corner.

The 15-year-old made quite the splash on his Games debut – claiming the scalp of GB team-mate and 100m backstroke champion Jonathan Fox en-route to finishing fourth in the S7 100m freestyle final.

Craig smashed his lifetime best on that occasion and repeated the trick twice yesterday to reach the 50m equivalent, touching home seventh in 29.29 seconds, with Fox sixth and fellow Brit Matt Walker taking bronze.

Having reached two Paralympic finals in his first two attempts, Craig still has his strongest event, the 400m freestyle, to come tomorrow.

And after being inducted into the Brit Pack in Manchester a month prior to his Games debut, the South Tyneside SC swimmer will not be lacking for advice ahead of his final tilt at glory.

“It was an improvement on this morning and that’s a big PB overall so I’m happy,” said Craig, who clocked 29.48secs in the heats.

“I also thought my two team-mates Matt Walker and Jonathan Fox were absolutely amazing. I looked up and I saw Jon’s time and I did not expect that.

“I trained with Matt and Jon for a month beforehand in Manchester and I picked up a lot of experience from them.

“It is a privilege to know them and I think without that month in Manchester bonding with them as my team-mates and as mates in general I don’t think I would be where I am.

“With their vast experience it has been a really big help and they could talk me through it as a friend, they really help me and support me.

“They always give me little bits of advice on the morning and on the night – even when I don’t want it but I’m really grateful for it now.”

While the 400m freestyle is Craig’s strongest event it’s also his least enjoyable but a bronze medal at the ASA Youth Championships hints at an outside medal chance, not that the Hebburn-born swimmer is interested in raising hopes.

“It’s the big one, it’s not my favourite – the 100m freestyle is my favourite – but it is certainly where I’m achieving the most at the minute,” he added.

“I hope I can do well in that and finish near enough the top five overall, not that I’m saying I will because you don’t know what other athletes can pull out on the day, but that’s my goal.”