Swimming Australia Not Sending Official Team To SC World C’ships

On the heels of Australia’s Duel in the Pool having been cancelled due to coronavirus-related restrictions, the nation’s Short Course Swimming Championships have also now been called off.

Originally scheduled for Melbourne from September 23 – 26, the Australian Short Course Championships was set to determine the green and gold’s squad for this year’s World Short Course Championships.

Those championships are slated for December in Abu Dhabi and Australia’s participation was already in doubt due to the country’s international travel restrictions and subsequent mandatory quarantine requirements

Per Swimming Australia, World Short Course Championships eligibility criteria will now be based on those swimmers who have reached a FINA A standard (Long or Short Course) within the time period from 1 March 2019 – 28 November 2021 at an international competition or Swimming Australia FINA-approved competition (Australian Swimming Trials/Australian Swimming Championships). A maximum of 20 swimmers could fall into this category.

CEO Alex Baumann said of the Aussie Short Course Championships’ cancellation, “This is an unfortunate situation and again a decision we did not take lightly, but we needed to provide our swimming community with some certainty and with the borders being so unstable and regular lockdowns still occurring we feel this is the right decision.

Regarding no official team being sent, Baumann stated, “With limited options to return to Australia, the quarantine requirements following competition falling over the Christmas and New Year period and many of our athletes just undertaken more than 10 weeks away from home, we felt sending a team to the event was not viable.

“For those athletes that still wish to attend and meet the selection criteria, we will provide a level of support to assist in travel and accommodation for the meet.”

At the 2018 edition of the World Short Course Championships in Hangzhou, China, Australia finished 7th in the overall medal table, amassing 12 medals, including 2 gold. The golds came from Ariarne Titmus as she topped the 200m and 400m free podiums.

The 2021 edition of the SC Worlds is set to see a 50% increase in prize money for individual medalists. The announced $2.8 million USD prize pool is well above the $2.07 million up for grabs at the previous SC Worlds.

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Awsi Dooger
11 months ago

I care about short course a heck of a lot more than the ISL. The 2018 version was very interesting and valuable. In particular Titmus learned how to finish and win. The women’s 200 was a stacked field with Pelligrini, etc. Comerford was favored. People tend to forget that Comerford was so strong at 200 short course that Ledecky ducked her in the NCAAs as a sophomore. Titmus trailed Comerford the entire race until surging the final 25 meters, just like Tokyo. Titmus had never won anything of consequence until that race. At the finish Titmus was so shocked she nervously too forever to turn around and look at the board to verify her win. I don’t care about veterans… Read more »

whever
Reply to  Awsi Dooger
11 months ago

I also like the 2018 version of short course worlds more than the isl final. Many great races.

Sam B
11 months ago

that picture is not good, there are zillions better for Titmus

Sub13
11 months ago

Meh. No one cares about short course events anyway. I would dare to say that probably less than 5% of the Australian population even knows that there is such a thing as “short course”. I certainly didn’t before I got into watching swimming.

There’s more underwaters than actual swimming. Honestly I’d be happy to just give Caeleb the prize money and not go through the formality of having the championships.

Last edited 11 months ago by Sub13
M D E
Reply to  Sub13
11 months ago

100% of the swimming community in Australia knows SC exists.

the fact the general public doesn’t is irrelevant, I’m sure there’s lots of relatively popular sports that have competition formats I don’t know about.

torchbearer
Reply to  Sub13
11 months ago

Yes, the underwaters and turns do my head in- dive, stroke, stroke, turn, stroke, stroke, turn, stroke, stroke, turn, stroke, stroke , finish! Hardly swimming! I suppose AUS has the luxury of a hundreds of 50m pools….not every country does.

Last edited 11 months ago by torchbearer
Murica
11 months ago

Doin lil titmus dirty with that pic jeez

Yuri
11 months ago

Regardless of your stance on covid restrictions, I think we all agree this is too much and way too draconian. 28 days of quarantine for athletes coming back from Tokyo ? No World Championships ? Are Aussies honestly happy about how this situation is being handled ? Something really bad is going on in Australia.

Dan
Reply to  Yuri
11 months ago

When you say “Something really bad is going on in Australia.” are you referring to Covid-19, how the government is handling the situation, or the swimming in Australia or something else?
If it is due to Covid-19 I guess it comes down to what the government wants to accomplish. Based on the number of reported deaths with Covid-19 it is about 52 times higher in the US than what they are in Australia (per million people, not in total numbers). When reading news from Australia there are a lot of people not happy with the restrictions imposed, but that seems to be the case all over the world.

Yuri
Reply to  Dan
11 months ago

What I mean is that it’s phisically impossible to prevent every single death. A very small number of people drown every year but ( rightfully) we don’t close the access to the beach. When the death toll is very small, there is a point where ruining everybody’s life ( to potentially save a couple ) becomes meaningless. Many parents struggle to feed their kids because of lockdown, many committed suicides, kids will be traumatized for years. It would be different if this was ebola or something else way deadlier.
But my question is : what are we accomplishing when they do that with the goal of saving a single digit number of people ?

PS : We have to… Read more »

Sub13
Reply to  Yuri
11 months ago

I believe the plan is reopen once we hit 70-80% vaccination rate. But who knows.

I agree that we can’t just stay shut forever. But I also don’t think you can be so flippant about human life. Banning people from swimming because they might drown is not the same as trying to contain a virus. A better example would be “why do we ban people from drunk driving, people are going to die in car accidents anyway”, because that affects people other than just the driver. It sounds absurd when you use a more appropriate example, doesn’t it?

torchbearer
Reply to  Yuri
11 months ago

Yes, that is the strategy, and on the whole is country is happy with it. There is a lot to like about being alive, our grandparents and children being alive. The analogy of a pandemic with drowning is ridiculous. I live in Adelaide, the state with the long quarantine period for returnees. We have had 10 lockdown days during the whole pandemic, and 4 deaths. What’s not to like?

BKP
11 months ago

I wonder how many big names will sit this one out due to ISL playoffs/final the following month?

Not Tapered 🏊
11 months ago

Some decent prize money though.

Hungry swimmer w a bunch of late bills
Reply to  Not Tapered 🏊
11 months ago

FINA knows SC Worlds is uninteresting, specially in Olympic years and thats exactly why it’s trying to bump the participation up offering better money… I personally believe the ISL could take care of SC shenanigans while FINA focus on LCM Worlds and Olympics.

Also… I believe I talk for the majority of my colleagues when I said we want the FINA Champion Series back!

Mel
11 months ago

US should do the same, Canada too.

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Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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