SA coach wants to know why too few US-based swimmers are succeeding


Swimming SA (SSA) is looking into why so few of the nation’s swimmers based in the US are failing to convert to elite level‚ national coach Graham Hill said on Monday.

Nine swimmers qualified for the world championships during the national trials in Durban last week.

The good news is that four of them were women‚ and every single one is trained locally — not one of the American females made the cut-off to get to the international showpiece in Gwangju‚ South Korea.

Of the five male qualifiers‚ three are in the US.

“We are looking at how many swimmers we’ve got in America‚ and when they left us what condition they were in‚” said Hill.

“When they come back they’re not stepping up to the next level and that doesn’t add up for me.”

Olympic medallists Penny Heyns and Marianne Kriel were among the last batch of US-based women to qualify for the Olympics.

The SA women who qualified for Beijing 2008 and London 2012 were all trained locally (no women qualified in 2004 and 2016).

Roland Schoeman‚ Ryk Neethling and Lyndon Ferns‚ all medallists at Athens 2004‚ were the last US-based men to win silverware for SA.

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Production engineer and certified swim coach. Full-time IT consultant, spare-time swimming aficionado. 2 sons, 2 daughters and a wife. President of the Faroe Islands Swimming Association. Likes to run :-)

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