Andrew Stephen Willis
Andrew Stephen Willis is a breaststroke specialist from Great Britain. Originally from Frimley, England Willis is an Olympian, World Championship finalist and a Commonwealth Games medalist. Born December 3rd, 1990 Willis comes from a family of swimmers — his father is the coach of club, Bracknell and Wokingham, Berks, and his sister also reached a semi-final at the 2012 British Olympic Trials.
Specializing in the 200-meter breaststroke, Willis’ first major international competitions were the 2011 World Championships and the 2010 Commonwealth Games, which was only a few years after just his Junior breakthrough at the 2008 European Juniors.
At the Commonwealth Games Willis picked up a 4th place finish just missing out on a medal, and he advanced to the championship final of the 200-meter breast, finishing 8th in Shanghai.
2012 London Olympics
Swimming in his first Olympic Games Willis qualified in the 200-meter breaststroke at the British Trials with a performance of a lifetime. The chemical engineering student advanced to the championship final of the event breaking the British Record in the process. His time was beat out by training partner Michael Jamieson, who went on to win the silver, and Willis finished 8th.
2014 Commonwealth Games
Coming off of a 4th place finish at the 2013 World Championships in the 200 breast, Willis won his first senior international medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games with a bronze medal in the 200-meter breast. The following month at the European Championships in Berlin Willis finished 4th in the event.
2015 World Championships
At the 2015 World Championships Willis focused in on his best event, the 200-meter breast. He had a strong semi-final swim, and advanced to the championship final in 5th place. In an extremely tight race for 1st through 4th, Willis had an evenly split race, and closed out the last 50 meter strong in order to finish 4th — he was less than a half-second from a medal.
2016 Rio Olympics
Willis qualified in second position for the 200 meter breaststroke final in Rio, but a close fought race saw him just miss a place on the podium. He finished fourth in 2:07.78, just 0.8 away from bronze and 0.32 from gold.