History-making Indian swimmer Sajan Prakash has received a World Aquatics scholarship to live and train at Bond University in Australia.
In 2021, Prakash became the first Indian swimmer to ever hit an Olympic “A” cut when he swam 1:56.38 in the 200 fly in the Sette Colli Trophy in Rome. He currently holds 8 individual National Records in India, including the 200 fly, 200 free, and 200 IM in long course.
Now the 30-year-old Police commander will move to Bond University in the Australian hotbed of the Gold Coast to continue his training for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. There he will train under head coach Chris Mooney.
“This will be a good opportunity for me to train under a great coach at Bond University and use the world class facilities. My First Goal Is To Attain A Standard Qualification Mark In Paris Olympics Which Is Around 1.56.30s. This competition has become even tougher and I am confident that this training will help me achieve this,” Prakash said.
Mooney is best and most recently known as the coach who led Australian Kaylee McKeown to three gold medals at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games while training at the University of the Sunshine Coast.
Prakash placed 23rd in the 200 fly at the 2023 World Championships (1:58.07) and 5th at the Asian Games (1:57.44).
The World Aquatics scholarship program provides scholarships for promising athletes from countries without elite infrastructure for competitive swimming. The scholarships can take on many forms, which include sending athletes to train abroad at designated World Aquatics training centers in the US, Senegal, France, Russia, and Thailand; they can send athletes to train at private clubs like the one based at Bond University; or they can financially support the development of an athlete’s training at home.