FINA issued a press release on Tuesday announcing that it will in fact recognize all matches from Season 3 of the International Swimming League (ISL) as qualifying events for December’s Short Course World Championships.
This issue popped up after we pointed out that Nic Fink, who was named to the U.S. team for SC Worlds in late October, appeared to be ineligible to race in one of the four events he was slotted in: the 100 IM.
The issue was due to the fact that Fink hadn’t competed in the event at a sanctioned SC Worlds-qualifying meet—he had done it in the ISL, but the league (or the national federation hosting the meets) never applied to have these meets approved as Worlds qualifiers with FINA.
Now, FINA has said that it will recognize times done in 2021 ISL matches for Worlds consideration while also nudging the Italian and Dutch Federation (the two host nations of ISL competition this year) that they need to seek approval from FINA for any international competition organized or sanctioned by them.
Full FINA Press Release
In response to the queries concerning the qualification of certain International Swimming League (ISL) 2021 events which took place in Napoli, Italy, and currently taking place in Eindhoven, Netherlands, the FINA Technical Swimming Committee (TSC) has decided to show good will and support for these athletes, and FINA will approve and consider these matches of the ISL 2021 season as qualifying events for the upcoming FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) 2021 in Abu Dhabi, UAE.
FINA wishes to remind both the Italian and Dutch Federation that as per the FINA Rule BL – 12, all Continental and Regional Organisations and Member Federations shall seek approval from FINA for any International Competition organised or sanctioned by them. To obtain approval, applicants must complete and submit a 1-page approval form available on the FINA website (www.fina.org) to FINA at least six (6) months prior to the proposed date of the international competition.
FINA endorses the consideration of the FINA Technical Swimming Committee, and with the support of the FINA Bureau, recognises the voices and achievements of the athletes.
Fink has raced the 100 IM once this year in the ISL, clocking a time of 52.55 during Match 6 of the regular season in Naples. With FINA’s release, it appears his entry into the event at Worlds won’t be an issue, though the organization clearly isn’t pleased that the Italian and Dutch Federation haven’t sought approval from it.
The 2021 Short Course World Championships are scheduled for December 16-21 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE).