British Swimming Announces 25-Swimmer Lineup For 2019 World Championships

Based on their performances at the 2019 British Swimming Championships, a 25-strong squad has been selected to represent Great Britain at the 2019 World Championships in Gwangju, Korea this summer. Below is the break-down of the different tiers of selection, but look for follow-up posts giving more insight into the team members.

Of the line-up, 5 swimmers were automatically qualified based on their gold medal-winning performances that dipped under the stiff British selection time. Those names include Adam Peaty, Daniel Jervis, Max Litchfield, Duncan Scott and James Wilby.

An additional 12 swimmers achieved the British Swimming-dictated consideration time in their respective events and have also been selected to compete at Worlds this summer. Those in this category include the likes of Ross Murdoch, Ben Proud and Aimee Willmott.

Finally, the remaining 8 slots were discretionarily picked by British Swimming brain trust Chris Spice and Bill Furniss. University of Stirling’s Scott McLay was handpicked due to his promising time drops over the course of the championships, while Laura Stephens produced a lifetime best in the 200m fly.

Additional athletes, such as 2016 Olympian Cameron Kurle, were added for relay members.

Commenting on the selections for the 2019 edition, British Swimming National Performance Director, Spice, said:

“We had another great British Championships in Glasgow where we saw some exceptional individual performances from our established group of senior swimmers.  In particular Duncan Scott, Adam Peaty, James Wilby, Max Litchfield and Ross Murdoch continued to show their class.  And of course, who could forget the brilliant 1500m Freestyle swim from Dan Jervis that had everybody on their feet and really set the Championships alight.

“The selectors were also pleased to see that some younger athletes have grabbed the opportunity that we gave them at last year’s Europeans to step up and make this team. We saw superb lifetime bests from Luke Greenbank, Tom Dean, Anna Hopkin and Jess Fullalove, that really built on those performances from last year. As we look towards Tokyo, the challenge now for the whole team is to move this on in the summer and swim a season’s best under the spotlights in Gwangju.”

With a top 12 finish in relay events securing a spot at next summer’s Olympic Games, Spice added:

“In terms of our discretionary selections, this year a key consideration was the need to qualify our relays for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, whilst resting those relay athletes that could have large schedules in Gwangju. Having said that, the stand out swim from this category was Laura Stephens in the 200m Butterfly, who just missed the World’s individual consideration time by 0.05%, so she fully deserves her inclusion.

“Now that the team is finalised we will head to a team preparation camp in June, with all athletes and staff getting together for two legs of the Mare Nostrum series in Canet and Barcelona. We have also been fortunate to secure our pre-World’s holding camp in Yokohama this year, which will also form a dress rehearsal for our preparations for Tokyo 2020.”

As an example of what discretionary selection means, McLay stated:

“I’m over the moon! This was one of my targets at the beginning of the season and the fact I’ve been able to achieve that shows that my hard work in the pool has paid off. I’m looking forward to going even faster at Worlds now and it gives me the confidence that the work I’m doing will carry forward to next year, which has always been the target.”

The British Swimming team for the 2019 World Championships in Gwangju:

Adam Peaty, England, National Centre Loughborough

Dan Jervis, Wales, Swansea University

Max Litchfield, England, National Centre Loughborough

Duncan Scott, Scotland, University of Stirling

James Wilby, England, National Centre Loughborough

The athletes above gained selection after they won their event and achieved the qualification standard at the British Championships 2019 as per Table 1 of the selection policy.

Ben Proud, England, Plymouth Leander

Ross Murdoch, Scotland, University of Stirling

Luke Greenbank, England, National Centre Loughborough

James Guy, England, National Centre Bath

Georgia Davies, Wales, Loughborough University

Alys Thomas, Wales, Swansea University

Molly Renshaw, England, National Centre Loughborough

Freya Anderson, England, Ellesmere College

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor, England, National Centre Bath

Aimee Willmott, England, University of Stirling

Tom Dean, England, National Centre Bath

Calum Jarvis, Wales, National Centre Bath

The athletes above gained selection after they achieved the consideration time as per Table 2 of the selection policy (individual and relay). 

Cameron Kurle, England, National Centre Bath

Nick Pyle, England, Newcastle

Holly Hibbott, England, Stockport Metro

Georgia Coates, England, National Centre Bath

Scott McLay, Scotland, University of Stirling

Jess Fullalove, England, National Centre Bath

Anna Hopkin, England, Ealing

Laura Stephens, England, Plymouth Leander

The athletes above gained selection at the discretion of the GB Head Coach and National Performance Director. The criteria for these decisions included the need to qualify relay teams for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games; provision of relay cover and alternates to rest key athletes that have large schedules; potential to make the Tokyo 2020 Olympic team; individual performances over the last 12 months and performances at the 2019 British Swimming Championships.

Coaches selected to the British team for the 2019 World Championships:

Euan Dale, Millfield School

Jol Finck, National Centre Bath

Dave Hemmings, National Centre Loughborough

Mel Marshall, National Centre Loughborough

David McNulty, National Centre Bath

Steven Tigg, University of Stirling

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1 year ago

With Scott, Guy, Jervis, Litchfield, Dean and Jarvis all options for 4×2, I would ask the need for Kurle to be going over someone like Jocelyn Ulyett or Charlotte Atkinson who could race individually as well as medley relay prelims

Reply to  oli
1 year ago

Jervis is not a serious option for the 4x200m

Reply to  Iain
1 year ago

He isn’t, but resting both Guy & Scott in prelims is also not a serious option. With the greatest of respect to the swimmers, but a team of Dean/Jarvis/Kurle/Litchfield might scrape into the final, but by no means would it be assured. Perhaps they won’t use Max…

Reply to  Dee
1 year ago

I think Scott will have to be rested because he could have quite a heavy schedule at worlds. I would say a team of Jarvis/Kurle/Dean/Guy should qualify

Reply to  oli
1 year ago

I suppose Top 12 in the relay is the first hurdle (for Olympic Qualification)….I can’t work out the British or French attitudes to relay qualification for 2020.

1 year ago

Prelims relay would be Litchfield, Kurle, Dean and Jarvis?

Reply to  Rafael
1 year ago

Hopefully not – Although BS have history throwing away medals by resting people.

Thomas Selig
Reply to  Dee
1 year ago

In 2017 it took a 7:10:5 to make the final (Poland in 8th). In fact the US barely made it, qualifying in 7th with a 7:09. On paper, Litchfield, Kurle, Dean and Jarvis should certainly be capable of a 7:09 or better*, which should be enough to make the final. But that’s two “should”s, so is it too much risk?

*At trials, their times combined to roughly 7:10, so throw in relay starts, and the fact that they will all be fresher than they were at Trials, and I reckon 7:09 or better is a reasonable guess.

Reply to  Thomas Selig
1 year ago

I guess it will be a bit faster this year for some reasons:

1) This year will define who are the top 12 who will have an automatic spot on OG
2) China and Brazil will come strong (Brazil add up to 7:07:4 without counting Altamir open relay leg of 1:46:7 and a subpar Scheffer on Trials) and China adds up to 7:08:07
3) Hungary went 7:11 on 2017, they already add up to 7:10
4) we still have to See Germany situation. But they went 7:09 on Europeans
Only on this we have 4 teams who were not top 8 that will come strong
5) JPN is a question mark yet and I Don´t… Read more »

Thomas Selig
Reply to  Rafael
1 year ago

Well France don’t have a team, so we can discount them. Agree also on Japan being a question mark.

You should definitely add Brazil to the mix though, they’ll make the final comfortably you’d expect, and won’t be too far off the medals IMO.

Less sure about the likes of China and Hungary, since guys like Milak and Sun Yang may well not swim the relays (prelims at least), and that weakens them considerably.

My gut feeling is it will be a bit faster, but perhaps not all that much. I’d still expect a 7:09-low to be enough to make finals.

Still, I am more leaning towards the idea of having Guy anchoring in prelims, with the possibility that he… Read more »

Reply to  Thomas Selig
1 year ago

And we have to see how they will seed the teams.. No one can take it easy on a slow heat.
Brazil might probably rest one guy (Breno for Leo Santos due to Breno having 100 free, same situation of Scott) but except US and Russia can´t see anyone resting 2 or more.

Reply to  Rafael
1 year ago

Litchfield likely swimming at least as much as Guy, so not sure that makes much sense.

Better swimming Jimmy last as a safety net, then if we’re looking good anyway he can always come off the gas a bit.

JP input is too short
Reply to  Togger
1 year ago

Yeah, I would say put Guy or Scott in there in prelims as anchor just in case. That way they can either put on the gas if needed or pull up if they’re killing it. That’s the nice thing about the 4×200 relay as opposed to the others – more margin for error.

1 year ago

If someone who just misses the consideration time “fully deserves her inclusion”, would it not make sense to set the qualifying times at the level deemed to “fully deserve inclusion”?

Because the athletes competing could have got the distinct impression that only those hitting automatic inclusion times “fully deserved inclusion”.

Reply to  Togger
1 year ago

It’s no different to the years when they consistently didn’t take Elizabeth Simmonds despite her producing faster times than anyone produced last week, simply because she wasn’t the right age. I understand about building a strong future, but I don’t really get why this should be at the expense of faster current swimmers.

JP input is too short
Reply to  Togger
1 year ago

Whatever it is, it’s better than the French are doing…!
Reply to  Togger
1 year ago

Interesting comparison looking at Pyle & Stephens selections. Pyle had not great trials but selected over swimmers ahead of him based on past swims/times whereas Stephens selected ahead swimmers with significantly faster previous swims (and better relay possibilities) as she beat them at trials? Only consistency would seem to be younger swimmer selected in both cases although those not taken are hardly old.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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