New Zealand website Stuff.co.nz is reporting that Swimming New Zealand has hired David Lyles, the head coach of the Shanghai Swimming Team, to be their new National High Performance coach.
Lyles is a Brit by birthright, and was the head coach of the University of Bath swim team from 1997-2005. After that role, China brought him in to lead the Shanghai Swimming Team, which also included duties with the Chinese National Team.
According to his credentials on his Linkedin account, Lyles has had swimmers selected for 5 of the last 6 Olympic Games, save for the 2008 event hosted in China. He also put swimmers on the Chinese National Team for the 2010 and 2011 World Championships.
He came to China in 2005 after marrying a Chinese woman and began working with the Shanghai Swimming Team then, and began his duties with the Chinese National Team in 2009.
He was actually presented with a commendation from China Swimming, a high honor, after half of the men’s 800 free relay bronze medalists from the 2012 Summer Olympics were trained by him: Jiang Hai Qi and Dai Jun.
He is also the coach of Ji Li Ping, and Asian Champion in the women’s 100 breaststroke, as well as Sun Xiao Lei and Zhou Xin, both of whom medaled at the 2011 World Short Course championships in backstroke events.
Lyles is expected to take the job that has been temporarily filled by legendary coach Bill Sweetenham (a similarly well-traveled soul) after working through the visa process.
The New Zealand team had a great leadup to the 2012 Olympics, resulting in a big team being named for the Games, but their only swimmer who held serve and final’ed at the Olympics was Lauren Boyle, who was 8th in the 400 free and 4th in the 800 free.