20 Australians Under 20 You Need to be Watching – Women

These are 20 of the top Australian swimmers under the age of 20 right now who you need to be paying attention to. They are listed in no particular order. Below are the 10 Australian women under 20 you need to be watching. We welcome discussion in the comments about other Australian swimmers not mentioned who people should be paying attention to.

Ariarne Titmus

  • Age: 18
  • Stroke:  Mid-distance freestyle
  • Most Impressive Feat: World Record in 400m SCM and 2 Individual Golds at World SC Champs 2018

Why you should be watching: She’s 18 and is a world record holder. Her long course is also extremely strong – grabbing 2 silvers at Pan Pacs in the 400m and 800m behind only Katie Ledecky. She’s an extremely strong contender for Tokyo. You should already be watching her.

Lani Pallister

  • Age: 16
  • Stroke: Mid Distance & Distance Freestyle
  • Most Impressive Feat: 3 individual golds and an individual silver at Junior Pan Pacs + a meet record in the 1500m

Why you should be watching: Pallister is just 16 and dominated at Junior Pan Pacifics. She picked up golds in the 400, 800 & 1500 freestyle posting the 17th fastest time in the world in the 1500. She is already in the top 10 Australian women in the 1500 of any age and recently at Queensland Champs she posted a 1:58.79 proving that she is a strong contender for Australia’s stacked 4x200m freestyle relay

Minna Atherton

  • Age: 18
  • Stroke: Backstroke
  • Most Impressive Feat: Two-time World Junior Champion, World Junior Record holder

Why you should be watching: Atherton broke onto the world stage back in 2015 where as a 15-year-old she picked up two golds at the World Junior Champs in the 50m and 100m backstroke. There she broke the World Junior Record for the 50m backstroke and tied the 100m backstroke record. A few months later she broke them both again with her 50m record still standing today.

Kaylee McKeown

  • Age: 17
  • Stroke: Backstroke
  • Most Impressive Feat: Mixed medley relay silver at the 2017 World Championships.

Why you should be watching: Kaylee McKeown has a big pedigree as the younger sister of 2016 Olympic silver-medalist Taylor, who is 23. Luckily for the family dynamics, Taylor is a breaststroker, so the two won’t be directly battling for spots on major international teams.

Eliza King

  • Age: 17
  • Stroke: Freestyle
  • Most Impressive Feat: Junior Pan Pacific Medal

Why you should be watching: King took bronze in the 100 freestyle at Junior Pan Pacs in a 54.92 as well as picking up top 5 placings in her 200 free and 50 free. At just 17 she’s a strong contender for a future as a top Australian sprinter and relay swimmer.

Laura Taylor

  • Age: 19
  • Stroke: Fly
  • Most Impressive Feat: Commonwealth Games Silver

Why you should be watching: An 18-year-old Taylor powered her way to a silver at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in an impressive 2:07.39. Even more impressive was her time at the Commonwealth Games Trials of 2:06.80 – the 4th fastest time in the world in 2018.

Madeleine Gough

  • Age: 19
  • Stroke: Distance Freestyle
  • Most Impressive Feat: 4th Pan Pacifics

Why you should be watching: Gough is 19 and is already a Pan Pacific qualifier and took 3 top 10 finishes at the championships. Her 400 was the best of the bunch coming 4th in a time of 4:08.42 putting her in the top 25 in the world for 2018.

Chelsea Hodges

  • Age: 17
  • Stroke: Breaststroke
  • Most Impressive Feat: Youth Olympics Silver

Why you should be watching: Hodges took silver in the 50m Breaststroke in Buenos Aires late last year in a 31.42 putting her in the top 70 in the world for 2018 at just 17. In terms of Olympic events, while her 100 didn’t final in Argentina, she dropped an impressive 1:08.83 in Australia’s medley relay proving she is also strong in the 100.

Abbey Webb

  • Age: 17
  • Stroke: Sprint Freestyle
  • Most Impressive Feat: 5th Youth Olympics

Why you should be watching: Webb took 5th place at the Youth Olympic Games in the 100 freestyle but her more impressive showing came in the medley relay where she dropped a sub 55 swim to secure Australia the silver. Sub 55 at 17 is impressive and like Eliza King she has a strong future as a sprinter and relay swimmer.

Michaela Ryan

  • Age: 16
  • Stroke: Fly
  • Most Impressive Feat: Youth Olympic Bronze

Why you should be watching: 16-year-old Michaela Ryan swum a strong 2:13.12 to take a bronze at the Youth Olympics last year. She also dropped an impressive 1:00.12 in the medley relay for Australia. Both are extremely impressive at such a young age



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2 years ago

You might want to edit what you wrote about McKeown as she isn’t a he or a 19 year old 200 breast stroked that goes a 2:07!

2 years ago

I’d have included Jenna Forrester some of the ones to watch above won’t go anywhere

2 years ago

Also you should report McKeown (Taylor) has gone to Michael bohls squad

2 years ago

the mckeowns both swim 200IM and 400IM, so they do compete against each other. Kaylee has a great 100 brs as well. And where is Jenna Forrester on this list???? She is one to watch

2 years ago

Shayna Jack isn’t from this category any more. Who could’ve thought. Time flies.

2 years ago

Natasha Ramsden another to watch. 3rd in 50 free at junior Pan PACs

2 years ago

It says Top 20 but only 10 listed??

Reply to  Calara
2 years ago

The other half are the men.