Swimming: Australian Eyeing for Success in Olympics 2016
By Dhrubajyoti Biswas | April 7, 2014 3:15 PM EST
Australian swimming coach Jacco Verhaeren said the emergence of new stars in the Commonwealth Game trials was one positive aspect to look forward to a success in Olympics 2016.
The cream swimmers emerged in the 100m-200m freestyle category with Cameron McEvoy, followed by siblings David and Emma McKeon. In the breaststroke category, kudos to the new queen Taylor McKeowan and Mark Horton in 1,500m freestyle.
Verhaeren had earlier coached 100m freestyle Olympic champion Pieter van den Hoogenband and is looking forward to make Australia the top class swimming squad by 2020.
He was also confident of Australia's further success in the Glasgow Games, slated to be held in the month of July.
"I'm not going to say they're all going to win (in 2016). I don't want to put pressure on them ... But at this meet we've seen a lot of people qualifying around the age of 17, 18 and 19 and I'd say that's a perfect age for Rio," Verhaeren said.
The 59-member squad for the upcoming Commonwealth Games was announced on Sunday. Headed by world champions like James Magnussen, Christian Sprenger and Cate Campbell added to the young prodigies that are expected to mark their presence in Glasgow.
Four years ago in Delhi, the Australian swimmers bagged 54 medals, including 22 gold medals.
Swimming Australia (SA) high performance director Michael Scott was highly impressed on Verhaeren's coaching success.
"In his short time he has done a terrific job in what I believe is the most significant change in swimming in Australia since (Don) Talbot left." Scott said.
The Australian Sports Commission is also expecting the Australian swimming team to lay down a formidable record by grabbing 53 medals at least and maximum of 55 medals.
In an effort to restore team culture, the move made by Scott proved effective.
"I believe they are coming into an improved culture ... When new swimmers come into the team we have strong leaders who set the example, who teach the rookies 'this is how the team operates' - it is not us lecturing athletes ... We have a long way to go but it's positive that we are moving forward in creating a new team dynamic," Scott added.
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