Two-Time World Champion Matt Richards Nominated For UK Sport Award After Historic Year

Two-Time World Champion Matt Richards Nominated For UK Sport Award After Historic Year

Matt Richards has been nominated for honours at UK Sport’s PLx Awards 2023 following a year in which he won double gold at the World Championships.

The 20-year-old – coached by Ryan Livingstone at Millfield, south-west England – hinted at what was to come at the British Championships in April where he became the first man to hit the 21/47.1:44 freestyle triple, going 21.98 in the 50, 47.72 in the 100 and 1:44.83 over 200.

Come the 200 free at the Fukuoka worlds and he led home Olympic champion Tom Dean for a historic British one-two before the pair joined forces with Duncan Scott and James Guy to add the 4×200 world crown to their Olympic title.

Matt Richards

Matt Richards: Photo Courtesy: Morgan Harlow/British Swimming

He also led off the British 4×100 mixed free quartet in 47.83 as they claimed bronze in a European record of 3:21.68.

Richards has the opportunity to add to his silverware at next month’s European Short-Course Swimming Championships in Otopeni, Romania.

There he’ll compete in the 50, 100 and 200 free where the likes of David Popovici, Maxime Grousset and Florent Manaudou await along with British teammates Dean, Scott, Guy and Ben Proud.

His achievements have been recognised with his nomination for the Athlete Award alongside Joe Clarke – who won two titles at the 2023 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships – and Matt Weston, who claimed the world skeleton crown while enjoying a golden World Cup campaign.

The PLx Awards is run by UK Sport and supported by The National Lottery with individuals, teams and outstanding projects in the Olympic and Paralympic high-performance community which will be celebrated at the awards ceremony in Stratford-upon-Avon on 28 November.

Looking back at his 2023 so far, Richards told Swimming World:

“It was a great year. The past season for me and the team was about building back to where we wanted to be.

“The previous year was quite a tough one for me; it wasn’t where I wanted to be after the success of Tokyo and so all of last season for us was about getting myself back on the trajectory that I wanted to be on heading into Paris.”

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