France’s Amaury Leveaux to Make ISL Debut With London Roar After Team Reloads

Amaury LEVEAUX of France reacts after finishing 7th in the men's 100m Butterfly Final during the 15th European Short Course Swimming Championships in Szczecin, Poland, Friday, Dec. 9, 2011. (Photo by Patrick B. Kraemer / MAGICPBK)
Photo Courtesy: Patrick B. Kraemer

The London Roar of the International Swimming League (ISL) were decimated by Swimming Australia’s decision to withdraw its swimmers from the ISL over concerns of traveling overseas during the COVID-19 global pandemic. The Roar had a large contingent of Australian athletes on its roster including Cate CampbellMinna AthertonEmma McKeon and Kyle Chalmers, and the team needed to reload after the announcement came forward that they will not participate.

The Roar, last season’s runners-up behind European rival Energy Standard, announced seven new signings to their roster for this season. The biggest name is Amaury Leveaux of France, who won the silver medal in the 50 freestyle at the 2008 Olympic Games, and also led off France’s 4×100 freestyle relay teams at the 2008 & 2012 Games. Leveaux is still the world record holder in the 100 freestyle in short course meters from his swim at the 2008 Europeans, as he is on the comeback trail after initially retiring from the sport after the London Olympics.

Leveaux announced a comeback in September 2018 at the age of 32, in hopes of taking the 50 freestyle gold medal in Tokyo. Leveaux will now have more time to prepare and a chance to swim in the ISL in this “new era of the sport.” The 6’8″ Leveaux will join Marie Wattel as French swimmers on the London team as the swimming world will see where the veteran is at in his pursuit of a spot in Tokyo next year.

The London Roar team also added the likes of British swimmers Harriett WestKathleen DawsonScott McLayEmily Large and Elliot Clogg, as well as Darragh Greene of Ireland.

Scott McLay made his senior debut at the 2019 Worlds when he swam on Great Britain’s 4×100 freestyle relay team that just missed the podium as he split a 47.85 in the finals. McLay’s best short course times in the 50 and 100 freestyle are 21.64 and 47.41 from 2018 as he should provide some sprint free depth to the London team.

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Emily Large – a new addition to the London Roar. Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Emily Large was the 2017 World Junior champ in the 200 butterfly as she sits seventh all-time for British Swimming in that event with her 2:07.74. Large was a 2:05.45 in short course meters last year, which was faster than any London Roar swimmer in 2019.

Harriett West is primarily a sprint butterflyer as she boasts a 57.46 as her short course best time in the 100 fly, which was about a second slower than Marie Wattel swam last year (56.39). West should be a key asset for the London Roar relays as they bolster up their depth after the departure of the Aussies.

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Kathleen Dawson – new addition to the London Roar. Photo Courtesy: Connor Trimble

Kathleen Dawson is a backstroke specialist who has represented Great Britain internationally at numerous events, with her short course best times coming from the 2016 Worlds (56.73, 2:04.09). The Roar lost their two best backstrokers in Atherton and Holly Barratt as Dawson has the best time of any of the current London swimmers in either backstroke event. She should be a big boost for the team that struggled to find a consistent second 200 backstroker after Atherton.

Elliot Clogg is a backstroke and freestyle specialist that will provide depth to the relays as his 200 back best time (1:52.35) is the second fastest time among Roar swimmers from last year after German Christian Diener (1:50.05).

Darragh Greene is a breaststroker from Ireland that just missed making the semi finals of the 100 breast at the 2019 Worlds, breaking the Irish record at 59.82 in long course. In short course, his 200 breast best time (2:07.60) would have been third on the team last season as the Roar lost a key piece in Worlds medalist Matthew Wilson of Australia.

London Roar roster:

  • Freya Anderson
  • Alia Atkinson
  • Elliot Clogg
  • Kathleen Dawson
  • Tom Dean
  • Christian Diener
  • Luke Greenbank
  • Darragh Greene
  • Guilherme Guido
  • James Guy
  • Holly Hibbott
  • Anna Hopkin
  • Mariia Kameneva
  • Marius Kusch
  • Vini Lanza
  • Emily Large
  • Annie Lazor
  • Amaury Leveaux
  • Scott McLay
  • Siobhan O’Connor
  • Adam Peaty
  • Sydney Pickrem
  • Kirill Prigoda
  • Duncan Scott
  • Kira Toussaint
  • Andreas Vazaios
  • Mikhail Vekovishchev
  • Marie Wattel
  • Harriett West
  • Aimee Willmott

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