Swim Ireland Announces Nine-Strong Team For Tokyo Olympics

Darragh Greene
Darragh Greene: Photo Courtesy: Swim Ireland

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Swim Ireland Announces Nine-Strong Team For Tokyo Olympics

Swim Ireland have announced a nine-strong team for Tokyo after official selection by the Olympic Federation of Ireland.

Daniel WiffenDanielle Hill, Ellen Walshe, Darragh Greene, Mona McSharry and Shane Ryan all secured FINA ‘A’ times.

Additionally, Finn McGeever and Jack McMillan have been selected as relay-only athletes in the men’s 4x200m free – the first time Ireland will compete in an Olympic relay in 49 years and the first men’s relay.

The invitation to compete in the men’s 4x100m medley relay was rescinded by FINA, resulting in Ireland’s ‘relay only’ athlete availability being reduced from four athletes to two as part of this process.

They will be joined by Brendan Hyland, Ireland’s only athlete to receive a FINA ‘B’ invitation to attend the Games.

With no other FINA ‘B’ invites received from FINA, Hyland’s invite was ultimately crucial to Ireland being able to compete in the 4×2 which requires at least two athletes qualified in individual events.

The fourth member of the relay team will be Shane Ryan, as under Olympic rules this athlete can only be selected from the three male swimmers on the team who have a FINA ‘A’ time.

As a result, two of the four swimmers – Jordan Sloan and Gerry Quinn – whose performances at the LEN European Championships in May were crucial to ensuring Ireland’s invitation to the 4×200 free relay cannot be selected under Olympic rules.

Jon Rudd, National Performance Director and Team Leader for the Games said:

“This has been the longest-ever Olympic cycle and qualification period that the sport has faced. To have nine swimmers amongst an 11-member aquatics team (with divers Oliver Dingley and Tanya Watson) for the Games is an excellent outcome for our sport and all those involved.

“A double Trials and a protracted relay appeal meant that many of our athletes have not known until very recently whether they would or could be selected to this team, and for all of the difficult days of uncertainty that they have had to face, we very much sympathise with them, particularly those who did not get over the line on this occasion.

“I have the greatest respect and admiration for Jordan and Gerry in particular.

“For the nine athletes on this team, there have been numerous coaches, clubs and family members that have been part of the journey alongside all of our athletes and for this, we sincerely thank them.

“Our attentions now turn to our preparation camp in Hamamatsu and our strongest endeavours to see this talented team perform to their best over the nine days of racing in Tokyo.”

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