Longford swimmer Darragh Greene will get his World Championships underway in Gwangju, South Korea tomorrow, Sunday, July 21.
Darragh, who specialises in the breaststroke, will compete against the world’s best in the Nambu University Pool and it presents him with the opportunity to secure an Olympic qualification time.
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Darragh will be one to watch as he takes on his main event, the 100m Breaststroke on day one (tomorrow).
Greene has already been under the Olympic qualification time of 59.93 at the European Championships in 2018, clocking an Irish Record of 59.92 in the process.
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He will need to repeat or better that performance tomorrow to pre-validate (* see explanatory note below) himself for the Tokyo Games.
Darragh Greene's schedule
Sunday, July 21: 100m Breaststroke Personal Best: 59.92 Season Best 59.98
Tuesday, July 23: 50m Breaststroke Personal Best: 27.4 Season Best 27.4
Thursday, July 25: 200m Breaststroke Personal Best: 2.10:05 Season Best 2.10:05
Heats 2am, Finals 12pm (Ireland times)
In all, ten Irish swimmers will compete in South Korea.
17-year-old Ellen Walshe makes her senior international debut in the 100m Butterfly. The Templeogue swimmer is the Irish Junior Record holder (1:00.69) in the event and has been edging towards the senior record (1:00.21) with a best time of 1:00.44 this season.
Ireland’s Male 4x100m Freestyle Relay team will complete the morning. Shane Ryan, Robbie Powell, Jordan Sloan and Jack McMillan will be seeking a top 12 performance, which would secure a place for Ireland in Tokyo next year. Ryan, Powell and Sloan along with David Thompson hold the current Irish record in the event at 3:17.55.
National Performance Director Jon Rudd said, "Our swimmers are in a good place to now start competing, having had an excellent preparation period in both Japan and South Korea. We have something to look forward to each and every day of competition here in Gwangju and our swimmers will be looking to build upon the two finals and one semi final achieved by our divers.
"With an Olympic Games only 12 months away now, this event is a key stepping-stone towards Tokyo whilst being an important and high-profile event in its own right. There is no doubt that it will be fast and highly competitive and we have to be ready to take any advantage that we can."
NOTE: *Via the 2020 Olympic Games Selection Policy (Swimming) (yet to be published and ratified by the OFI), athletes have been set a time in each event which, if achieved at the 2019 World Championships, would pre-validate them for consideration to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games next summer. Such athletes would still need to attend the 2020 Irish Open (Trials), but the time required at the Trials to formalise their place on the National Team for the Games would be much less demanding than the time required should they not achieve this in Gwangju. The final selection on the team for the Games is made by the Olympic Federation of Ireland.