The latest update to the roster of the Toronto Titans includes the team losing one of their bigger names in Canadian Kayla Sanchez for the 2020 regular season, at least, and adding British swimmer Candice Hall and Tayla Lovemore to fill out the team’s roster.
According to Toronto Titans general manager Rob Kent, Sanchez “had to take some time off to have her shoulder all fixed up for the coming season.” Sanchez has had some lingering shoulder injuries previously, but Kent declined to elaborate on the nature or severity of the current ailment.
We have reached out to Sanchez via her coach Ben Titley at the High Performance Center – Ontario asking for more details about her shoulder.
He did, however, say that if the Titans make the finals, that Sanchez will be “100%” and “is really keen to compete.”
Swimming for Energy Standard, the league champions, last season, Sanchez was one of the breakout stars of ISL. She ranked 13th overall in the league in MVP scoring, and was the 4th-best scorer on Energy Standard.
She picked up an individual event win in the 200 free at the European Derby event in London that ended the regular season, and also had a few relay wins throughout the season.
With underrated versatility that includes success in IM, freestyle, and if needed breaststroke events, Sanchez proved to be a huge asset for Energy Standard last season. At full strength, she was the biggest piece of the Titans’ expansion roster for their first season in 2020.
The Titans had another late withdrawal due to injury, Russian National Team captain and former backstroke World Record holder, who also backed out this week due to injury. She was replaced by Jheniffer Conceicao.
The Titans have in Sanchez’s stead added Candice Hall, a 23-year old who trains with Loughborough University in the UK. Hall adds some freestyle, butterfly, and IM depth to the roster.
Hall’s Best Times:
Most of Hall’s best times in short course meters would have resulted in her times being ‘stolen’ under the ISL’s new “Jackpot Scoing” scheme, though in a few events, like the 200 free, she could be clear of that threat if she’s at her best for the ISL season.
Tayla Lovemore Addition
Lovemore, a South African based at Florida State University in the US, is a 25-year old sprint butterflier and freestyler who represented her home country at the 2019 World Championships.
“My emotions for being picked up at the last minute are kind of all over the place. To be honest, I wasn’t really looking at any teams, so I’ve been focusing more on my own personal training and preparing for the Olympic Games,” Lovemore said of the late addition. “And so it was a cherry on top…I’m really happy because it give me the opportunity to race with the best of the best and train with the best of the best, and get that race mentality going again.”
“I do not plan to rest at all for any of the meets,” Lovemore said of her approach to the season. “I want to use this experience as a race-train (opportunity).
“I want to race, and I want to train, and I want to keep training, and I want to race again and I wanna see if I get better throughout the season. I want it to be hard, I want to feel like I’m tired, I want to feel like I’m sore, but I want to feel like I’m pushing myself.
“I’m feeling pretty excited, I think this is going to be a good season.”
She is also the 2019 World University Games gold medalist in the 50 fly (26.25) and 100 fly (58.74).
In spite of a breakout summer representing South Africa, Lovemore struggled in her first two meets of the 2019 ISL season racing for the New York Breakers. She bounced back in the team’s finale, the American Derby event in College Park, to place 3rd in the 100 fly in 56.93 – more than a second faster than she swam in the team’s opener in Lewisville.
Lovemore’s Best Times:
Lovemore has the long course credentials to be a strong contributor to the ISL if she can hit her peak form
Razzetti out, Pasynkov In
There’s one small change to the men’s roster as well.
Alberto Razzetti of Italy is out – we’ve reported on a group of Italian swimmers withdrawing from the league, mostly from the Italy-based Aqua Centurions roster. Razzetti projected as Toronto’s best IMer and perhaps 200 flyer.
He’s been replaced by Russia’s Daniil Pasynkov, solid 200/400 IMer and 200/400 freestyler who more than makes up for Razzetti’s absence in the IMs.
|NAME||Athlete or Staff|
|17||Anika Apostalon||Czech Rep.||Athlete|
|31||Tayla Lovemore||South Africa||Athlete|
|34||Dylan Kent||Canada||Assistant GM|
|35||Mia Nonnenberg||USA||Team Manager|
|36||Byron MacDonald||Canada||Head Coach|
|37||Vlastimil Cerny||Canada||Assistant Coach|
|38||Dave Johnson||Canada||Home Coach|
|39||Tom Johnson||Canada||Home Coach|
|40||Sergey Terasov||Russia||Home Coach|
|41||Lukas Brandmeier||Germany||Home Coach|
|42||Antonio Lutula||Sweden||Home Coach|