The countryâ€™s top swimmers are competing at the SA championships in Durban this week in a bid to qualify for the world gala in Kazan in August.
Cash-strapped Swimming SA (SSA) has imposed a tough two-tier qualifying systemâ€š with the faster time in each event guaranteeing a free ticket and the lesser time a partially funded trip.
It is not yet known exactly how much swimmers will have to payâ€š but estimates range from R6000 to R10000.
In 19 of the 28 menâ€™s and womenâ€™s individual eventsâ€š SSAâ€™s lesser times are faster than the A-qualifying times stipulated by the world governing bodyâ€š Fina.
That is because SSA has opted to use the qualifying times for next yearâ€™s Olympicsâ€š where only nine times are the same as for this yearâ€™s world championships.
â€œOlympic performances donâ€™t start at the Olympic trials next yearâ€š they start nowâ€šâ€ said SSA chief executive Shaun Adriaanse. â€œThe world championships are a dress rehearsal for the Olympic Games.â€
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