Stars battle for UK championship places

SWIMMING: Suffolk's schools swimmers have been back in the pool and bidding for a prestigious place in the forthcoming UK schools championship.Sensational performances by many of Ipswich's top young names has provisionally given our region a strong chance for glory.

By Debbie Watson

SWIMMING

SUFFOLK'S schools swimmers have been back in the pool and bidding for a prestigious place in the forthcoming UK schools championship.

Sensational performances by many of Ipswich's top young names has provisionally given our region a strong chance for glory.

Of the better known contenders, Joe Rhodes, Matt Vinter and Abbie Thorrington all impressed the crowd at Crown Pools.

The latest shortlisting event, officially entitled the English Schools Division Eight championships, saw dozens of national and district level swimmers battling it out.

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It followed a stringent process of selection time trials in which youngsters from Suffolk, Norfolk, Cambridgeshire and Essex (including some London boroughs) had to prove their competitive talent for a place in one of the final stages.

Schools throughout the UK had been asked to submit swimmers' times and the fastest 16 in each event were then invited to battle it out, with only the first and second placed swimmers being selected for the latest Ipswich event.

Also impressive on the night were Ipswich's Sophie George, Laura Healey, Emma Game and Sam Heard.

Only the swimmer winning the individual event is likely to be selected to represent the Eastern Counties at the National Schools Championships to be held at Ponds Forge, Sheffield, on October 25 and 26.

Division Eight representative Sue Ayres said: "The Division Eight committee will now meet to make the final selection and then inform the swimmers who will represent the Eastern Counties."

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