Australian National Swim Team Wear for Commonwealth Games Face Criticism for Drawing Attention to Crotch Area

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By Vittorio Hernandez | July 7, 2014 8:19 AM EST

Jun 22, 2014; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Caitlin Leverenz on her way to winning the Women's 200 IM final during the Championship Finals at the George F. Haines International Aquatic Center. Mandatory Credit: Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 22, 2014; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Caitlin Leverenz on her way to winning the Women's 200 IM final during the Championship Finals at the George F. Haines International Aquatic Center. Mandatory Credit: Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports

Even before Australia's national swim team could fly to Glasgow for the Commonwealth Games, its members are receiving criticism because of their swimwear for allegedly drawing attention to the crotch area.

The bathing suits and swimming trunks, made by Speedo which showcased the swimwear on Wednesday to the public, has kangaroo prints, emus and the Australian map in green and gold colours. Swimmers Brittany Elmslie, Melanie Schlanger, Bronte Barratt and Cameron McEvoy modeled the apparel.

The Scotsman is critical of the swim attire of Aussie tankers for being "unbecoming and guiding the eye 'to the wrong place.'" Brisbane stylist Di Cant disagrees with the shape of the green-and-black swimwear, particularly how the colours merge.

"My main issue is with the green and black suits and the emphasis on the crotch. The shaping of the crotch and with the black leg, something is not quite flattering. It is drawing the eye to the wrong place, rather than to the athletic body and the overall look," The Chronicle quoted Cant.

Mark Ferguson, the director of Wil Valor, an Australian tailoring company, said the swim outfit tried too hard to be "out there" but failed. "It's a really busy pattern - you don't know where to look. It looks incomplete," he added.

Ruth Walker, editor in chief of Crave, a Scottish fashion site, said the design flattens the female swimmer's chest and point to her broad shoulders. She suggested cutting the swim wear legs higher and the addition of more substantial straps.

But she likes the retro print and actually described the criticisms as "stooshie over nothing" since the emphasis of the swimwear was to enable speed instead of being aesthetically pleasing.

The team members dismissed the negative talk and said they are excited about their pool attire.

"The colours seem good, they're majority green instead of majority black which is really good because that represents Australia," said freestyle Barratt.

Shclanger, an Olympic gold medalist, tweeted she really likes the new look of their bathing suit.

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(Photo: Reuters / )
Jun 22, 2014; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Caitlin Leverenz on her way to winning the Women's 200 IM final during the Championship Finals at the George F. Haines International Aquatic Center. Mandatory Credit: Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports
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