No Kalisz, Szabo, Peaty, or Prigoda for ISL Playoff #2

2021 INTERNATIONAL SWIMMING LEAGUE – SEASON 3, MATCH 13 – PLAYOFFS MATCH 2

  • Saturday, November 13th – Sunday, November 14th
  • 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm local time; 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm EST
  • Pieter van den Hoogenband Zwemstadion, Eindhoven, Netherlands
  • Short Course Meters (25m – SCM) Format
  • ISL Season 3 Schedules, Start Times, & More
  • Teams Competing: London Roar, Toronto Titans, LA Current, Aqua Centurions
  • Start Lists

As was the case with Playoff #1 (Match #12 by the ISL’s count), the early story of Playoff #2 on Saturday is a number of notable absences.

Chief among those absences is both of London’s top breaststroker Adam Peaty and Kirill Prigoda.

With access to their full roster, the men’s breaststrokes are a strength for the Roar, but with no Peaty or Prigoda, that’s a big hole in the team’s lineup as they fight for a spot in the ISL finale for the third-straight season. Peaty, who missed the regular season due to his appearance on Strictly Come Dancing, is on the Roar’s roster, though the general belief is that he’s not expected to make any of the Playoff matches.

There were hopes for an appearance from Prigoda, though, which is arguably more important.

The other big name missing is Hungarian swimmer Szebastian Szabo of the Aqua Centurions. Last week, at the European Short Course Championships, he tied the World Record in the 50 fly. While no specific reason has been given for his absence (and Aqua is the only team that didn’t respond to requests for a full Playoff roster), the Hungarian team at the European Championships did face an outbreak of COVID-19.

This meet overlaps with the Hungarian National Championships, but Szabo hasn’t made an appearance there either.

Olympic gold medalist Chase Kalisz is also not in Aqua’s lineup for Playoff #2.

Aqua, even as the #6 seed and the best team in club history, still didn’t really have much chance to advance to the Finals, but the absence of Szabo, Kalisz, and a few others this weekend pretty much seals that fate.

The women’s rosters are much more intact: only really high-profile female swimmer is notably absent: Aqua Centurions’ Arianna Castiglioni is the fastest 100 breaststroker in the ISL this season, including ahead of Lilly King. Meet announcers talked about her still being on their heat sheets, so she must have been a very late scratch to the meet.

Other Names we noticed missing from day 1, though some could be at the meet and just have not been chosen among the 14-swimmer side for their team:

Noteworthy event choices:

  • Top French swimmer Marie Wattel (London Roar) and Beryl Gastaldello (LA Current) are both absent from the 100 fly that will start the meet. Wattel is being used in only relays on day 1, while Gastadello will swim relays and the 50 free.
  • Kira Toussaint, the World Record and ISL Record holder in the 50 backstrokes, won’t swim the 200 backstroke – where she would’ve been a contender to win. Instead, she’ll swim the 50 backstroke and two relays.
  • Sydney Pickrem is only swimming the 200 IM at this meet. Twice this season, Pickrem has left an empty lane in an ISL event – once in Match 3 in the 200 IM, and once in Match 9 in the 400 IM, without any explanation from the London Roar staff. On Saturday, her schedule has been pared way back to just a single race.
  • Toronto’s Summer McIntosh, a young phenom and the best “value” draft pick of the ISL season, will swim only two races: a leg on Toronto’s “B” 400 free relay and the 400 free individually. That’s the schedule she swam at her two regular season appearances, with the 200 fly and 400 IM to come on day 2.
  • The versatile Emma McKeon, star of women’s swimming at the Tokyo Olympics, will swim the 100 fly, 50 free, and two relays

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Str
1 year ago

In the ideal world, swimmers only get on the list of rosters when they are 95% sure to participate. And those on the start list, 100%. If not, a clear explanation. However it’s just a dream. In most cases it doesn’t turn out like this. Not just ISL, even the euro short course that just ended was the same with athelets constantly scratching the races and us constantly perplexed.

HJones
1 year ago

ISL is a complete joke. I get all the hype at the start when there were high hopes for what it could become, but it’s getting to the point where the athletes don’t even care about it, or at least don’t prioritize it enough to participate more. I will give the league at most 1 more season before it folds, and frankly wouldn’t be surprised (nor think it would be a huge loss) if this were to be the last season.

Verram
1 year ago

Nothing against him but I think peaty is now at the point of his career where he is trying to maximise his earnings due to his swimming talent .. he’s off promoting a new book out which I think is a bit premature to publish one given he’s still swimming but there you go .. swimming is second priority for him at the moment

FraserThorpe
Reply to  Verram
1 year ago

Why is it premature to publish a book at this time in his career. It’s not a memoir or autobiography.

Verram
Reply to  FraserThorpe
1 year ago

So what is it ? I just think the story is still unfolding so what’s the purpose of a book at this point ? Aside from making money

Corn Pop
Reply to  Verram
1 year ago

PR . I think he wants to break into filming & why not ? He’s maybe not Heathcliffe material but he looks great in a wig ,though his girlfriend will not allow him in anything romantic but plenty of scope .

Last edited 1 year ago by Corn Pop
Owlmando
Reply to  Verram
1 year ago

Phelps published a book not too long after beijing. He just defended his 100m title, hes at a high point. It makes dollars, not sense

Chas E
1 year ago

Is Ryan Held on roster for LA?

Troyy
1 year ago

Should put draft pick in quotes for McIntosh,

Sub13
1 year ago

I wish the missing swimmers would be explained. The fact that literal world record holders just aren’t showing up with zero explanation really hurts the legitimacy of the ISL. Can you imagine Olympians favoured to win gold just not rocking up with no explanation? Or key stars in the soccer World Cup being on their team’s roster but not playing with no explanation?

It really just makes it seem like ISL is not important at all and the star swimmers don’t care about it. Definitely not helping it gain any support, which it really needs if it’s going to survive for much longer.

Taa
Reply to  Sub13
1 year ago

Let me explain…….they don’t want to work for free

Sub13
Reply to  Taa
1 year ago

The why join the league at all? I would totally understand people quitting the league over pay disputes. I don’t understand swimmers signing up for the league, being placed on rosters and then just failing to show up with no explanation. How does that benefit them in any way at all? Even just an Instagram post saying “I can’t make it to the playoffs” would be sufficient.

pedestrian
Reply to  Sub13
1 year ago

I can understand your rant. My most fav swimmer signed up as a part of the rosters but never showed up either. It’s total frustration.

KatyJ
Reply to  Sub13
1 year ago

Maybe all teams have to have roster members swim a specific number of races. Ie regular season and play offs or the team forfeits points

Mike
Reply to  Sub13
1 year ago

ISL could end up being really important for swimmers if it works out long term but comparing it to the Olympics or World Cup is a joke. There are any number of events in other sports that some of the top athletes don’t show up to.

Sub13
Reply to  Mike
1 year ago

Please name another international sport where its top stars get put on the roster but then don’t show up and there’s no explanation from them or their team or the league

Str
Reply to  Mike
1 year ago

Yeah the most important meets for all swimmers stay the same, the Olympics and the LC world Championships, otherwise they just don’t bother to justify whatsoever.

Owlmando
Reply to  Sub13
1 year ago

I think some of those missing stars may feel the explanation goes eithout saying… they grinded for years and want a break post olympics. Shouldn’t have to be reiterated every major event. Some things dont have a price tag

Sub13
Reply to  Owlmando
1 year ago

I’m not asking for a reflective essay here. One sentence in a tweet or an Instagram story saying “I’ve decided to take a break after the Olympics so won’t be at the ISL playoffs this year” doesn’t seem like a big ask, especially when they know their name is on the roster to appear.

CC2004
1 year ago

Predictions for Playoff Match 2
My predictions London , La / Toronto , Aqua
La / Toronto should be interesting for 2nd

CanSwim13
Reply to  CC2004
1 year ago

It feels LA is the only team that really got a boost from the regular season matches (addition of Murphy) while other teams took some hits

Yoo
Reply to  CanSwim13
1 year ago

london have dean added, yes they dont have peaty, prigoda and Campbell but they didnt have them in regular season either.

Last edited 1 year ago by Yoo
Ghost
Reply to  CanSwim13
1 year ago

THE question: will all the studs from the top 4 teams show up for the finals? And does that make all the prior rounds unimportant?….except for the giveaway money!

Troyy
Reply to  Ghost
1 year ago

There should be a rule that a swimmer must have swum at least one match before the final. It’s ridiculous to parachute in reinforcements just for the final ala Seto last year.

CC2004
1 year ago

London Roar in trouble for Mens Breaststroke

Sub13
Reply to  CC2004
1 year ago

They’ve been missing their only two good breastrokers the whole season and still beat Cali and went close to Energy. They’ll easily win this match, but they have no shot at the final without a breastroker

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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