The 32 Paralympic swimmers heading to Tokyo have been confirmed after a tough five days of qualifying at the Australian Swimming Titles.
The team features 15 debutants along with some of the most successful swimmers in Australian Paralympic history, including six-time gold medallist and winner of 15 Paralympic medals Ellie Cole, seven-time medallist Matthew Levy, and Brenden Hall, who has won six Para-swimming medals including three gold so far.
Also among those named were Lakeisha Patterson, winner of six medals at the Rio 2016 Paralympics including two gold, and Tiffany Thomas Kane, who won four medals in Rio including one gold.
Levy, 34, is the most senior member of the team and will now prepare to compete at his fifth Paralympics, having started his Paralympic journey at Athens in 2004.
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The youngest member of the team is 15-year-old Isabella Vincent, who qualified in front of her home crowd at Adelaide.
Unlike the Olympic team, finishing first or second and swimming a qualification time at the trials in Adelaide this week, did not guarantee para-swimmers a ticket to Tokyo due to restrictions on how many athletes each country can enter.
The Para-swimming team for Tokyo was introduced by Australian Team Chef de Mission Kate McLoughlin at the completion of the trials on last night.
“What we know from previous Games is that swimming often sets the barometer for other sports in which we compete,” McLoughlin said.
“In Rio, our 36 swimmers brought home 29 medals, including nine gold, an inspiring outcome that formed the foundation of Australia’s top-five finish at the Games.
“This particular group has faced a lot of adversity in the past year or so. Yet, through their resilience and desire, and with exemplary support from Swimming Australia, they will head to Japan as ready as they could possibly be to compete at their best.”
Paralympics Australia Chief Executive Lynne Anderson said: “Any conversation about Australia’s incredibly proud history at the Paralympic Games will always include swimming.
“I look at the calibre of the swimmers we’ll have representing us in Tokyo, I have no doubt we’ll see a strong, cohesive and dedicated group of athletes giving everything they’ve got to make the nation proud, just as their predecessors did.”
The Paralympics run from August 24 to September 5.
SWIM TRIALS:CATE MAKES HISTORY AS TEAMMATE STEALS SPOTLIGHT
200m individual medley gold medallist at Commonwealth Games in 2018
She was a three-time finalist in the Rio Paralympics
Finished on the podium in five events at the 2019 national championships. It will be his first Paralympics
She has won 15 Paralympic Games medals including six gold medals
Finalist in all four events at 2016 Rio games
Won bronze medal in the women’s 100m backstroke at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games
Won a gold, silver and bronze medal at first Paralympic Games in Rio
A former surf lifesaving ironman will make his Paralympic debut this year
At just 16 she already has a world championship bronze medal to her name
Off to his fourth Paralympic Games, an eight-time world champion
Set a world record in the 100m backstroke MC with a phenomenal time of the 57.56 at the trials on Wednesday night.
Tokyo will be her first international competition
Looking to add more silverware to the trophy cabinet after winning silver at the Commonwealth Games in 2018.
Off to his second Paralympic Games. He won a silver medal 2019 at the world championships
Competed in six events at her first Paralympics in 2016.
The second Australian Paralympic swimmer to compete at five games. He has been a member of the team since Athens in 2004.
Made his international debut at the world championships in 2019
Was part of the world record setting relay time at the Rio Paralympic Games.
Off to her first Paralympic Games
Will look to build on his fourth place at the 2019 World Championships at his first Paralympics.
Is back on the Australian Paralympic team after narrowly missing out in 2016.
She won six medals at her first Paralympics in 2016 including two gold medals.
Made his international debut at the 2019 world championships, picking up three medals
Off to his second Paralympics and looking to build on his silver medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
Showed off her skills at the 2019 world championships, a rising star.
Picked up a bronze medal at the 2019 world championships.
Tiffany Thomas Kane
Won four medals in Rio including gold in 100m breaststroke
Tokyo will be her first international competition
Ashley Van Rijswij
Made her mark on at the multiclass championships earlier this year
The youngest member of the Australian Paralympic swimming team
Won a gold medal in the 50m freestyle at the 2016 Paralympics
He couldn’t attend the trials due to being caught up in the Victorian Covid-19 lockdown but swam a qualifying time at the multiclass titles in April.
Originally published as Tokyo bound: Aussie Paralympic swim team named