Sergio Lopez Miro is the new man in charge of swimming at Singapore Swimming Association (SSA). The new head coach, together with new assistant coach, Gary Tan, took charge of the first National Training Centre (NTC) training session at the OCBC Aquatic Centre (AQC) today.
Lopez and Gary were at the pool deck at 5.30 am as they welcomed the swimmers that have been accepted to be part of the new National Training Centre Squad.
For the first intake of the NTC Squad, a total of 59 carded athletes were invited to apply, of which 11 are overseas-based and 48 are local-based. A total of 35 athletes applied and 23 were accepted. The first batch of 20 out of 23 athletes began their training today at AQC while 3 athletes (Amanda Lim, Hannah Quek and Darren Chua) chose to continue to train with their existing coach till SEA Games 2015.
“We did not do anything fancy on the first day of training, it was more about getting to know the swimmers”, said Lopez. “Over the next two weeks, it will be about setting up the systems and understanding the swimmers and their schedule and then start planning on how to help the swimmers to qualify for the Southeast Asian Games by March.”
The swimmers were back at AQC again at 4 pm for the second training session of the day, which kicked off with a meeting between the coaches and swimmers.
“The meeting was important as we all needed to sit down together to share the direction and expectations, and the swimmers will also have questions to ask,” said Gary.
A further 10 athletes will be added to the first intake as second batch. Athletes that have made the qualifying times for preliminary accreditation for SEA Games but not carded in 2014, carded athletes in 2014 but did not make the qualifying times for preliminary accreditation for SEA Games or athletes that have made the qualifying criteria for 2015 carding (recommended by SSA and pending review by SSI) will be considered and invited to apply. Athletes will be informed by 15 January if they are successful in their application.
Swimming News courtesy of Singapore Swimming Association.