Eyes set on Olympic Qualification, Indian Swimmers look to set the pool ablaze

By | September 23, 2019

~ With top honours in 124 swimming events in the offing, 44 elite Indian swimmers will vie for a podium finish at the 10th Asian Age Group Championships to begin tomorrow in Bengaluru ~ 

~ Water Polo and Diving squad make up for a total Indian contingent of
86 participants and 18 officials 

Bengaluru, 23 Sept 2019: With their sight set on the Olympic Qualification, Indian swimmers are geared up for a strong medal haul at the 

Indian Swimming team pose in Bengaluru on Sunday.

10th Asian Age Group Swimming Championships to begin in Bengaluru on Tuesday, 24 September 2019 at the Padukone-Dravid Centre for Sports Excellence. 

The 9-day competition considered as the largest aquatic championships in Asia will see over 1000 participants taking part in four disciplines namely swimming, diving, water polo and artistic swimming. 

The 44-member India swim team will be lead by ace swimmer Sajan Prakash taking part in the 100m, 200m butterfly and 200m individual medley while his compatriot and fastest Indian swimmer Virdhawal Khade will be keeping in mind the ‘A’ cut time of 22.01 seconds when he steps on the starting block for 50m freestyle event. He will also be taking part in the 100m freestyle and 50m butterfly event. 

India’s backstroke sensation Srihari Nataraj who has been in lethal form having clocked the ‘B’ qualification time in 100m backstroke at the FINA Junior World Championships last month will be aiming to swim past his personal best of 54.69 seconds, the ‘A’ cut for this event is 53.85 seconds. Srihari will also participate in the 50m and 200m backstroke as well as 100m freestyle event. Middle and long-distance freestyle swimmer Kushagra Rawat is another swimmer to watch out for in the open category while among the women in the open category, sprinter Rujuta Khade, backstroker Maana Patel and middle-distance swimmer Shivani Kataria are expected to contribute to India’s medal tally. 

A strong line-up in the Group I boys will see Tanish G Mathew lead the charge as he takes part in 50,100, 200m butterfly. Hiten S Mittal, Sanjay CJ, Swadesh Mondal are among the other Group I swimmers expected to make podium finish. 

Suvana Bhaskar, Kenisha Gupta, Kushi Dinesh will be India’s medal hopes in the Group I girls category while Shoan Ganguly, Vedant Madhavan, Sahil Laskar, Devansh Parmar, Utkarsh Patil and Vidith Sankar have been named in the Group II Boys. Apeksha Fernandes, Bhavya Sachdeva, Ridhima Veerendra and Nina Venkatesh have been selected in the Group II girls category. 

“The Indian team has been selected basis national trials and the cut off time set by Asia Swimming Federation. These 44 swimmers are the best in the country and this edition of Asian Age Group Championships taking place at home gives them a great opportunity to make a mark at the international level,” Virendra Nanavati, executive director, Swimming Federation of India. 

The event will witness top competition from countries such as Japan, China, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, Thailand, Kazakstan, Iran, Qatar, Jordan, Kuwait, Kyrgyz Republic, Maldives, Nepal, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkmenistan, UAE, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, Thailand, Sri Lanka, South Korea, Philippines, Indonesia, Singapore, Bangladesh and also Syria.
“We have all been eagerly awaiting the start of this Championships and our excitement is palpable as we are competing in an International meet in Bengaluru for the first time. The home advantage will surely be a driving force and we have kept the ‘A’ cut time in mind during our training in the lead up to this event. We are confident of a good show and personally I am looking to swim faster than the Senior Nationals last month,” stated Virdhawal Khade. 

“Many of us were not fully tapered during the Senior Nationals held in August. This was to ensure we peak at the right time and I am confident many of us will improve our personal bests during this meet. It’s important to not feel the pressure of making the ‘A’ cut,” expressed Srihari Nataraj.  

Shivani Kataria, who represented India at the 2016 Rio Olympics, said she is hoping for a good medal haul. “I am taking part in six events so recovery and ample rest between my events is important. Since this is a very short meet of four days, I need to be mentally and physically ready to swim back-to-back events,” she said.  

The event will have participants in open category (18 years and above), as well as Age Groups I (15-17 years) and II (14 years and below). In the previous edition, India won a total of 40 medals in Swimming with 5 Gold, 13 Silver and 22 Bronze Medals while in Diving India won 3 Gold, two Silver and three Bronze Medals. 
Open Category:
1. Anand Anilkumar Shylaja – 200m Freestyle, 400m Freestyle2. Virdhawal Vikram Khade – 50m and 100m Freestyle, 50m Butterfly3. Supriyo Mondal – 50m, 100m and 200m Butterfly4. Sajan Prakash – 100m and 200m Butterfly, 200m Individual Medley5. Kushagra Rawat – 200m, 400m, 800m and 1500m Freestyle6. Siva S – 200m Backstroke, 400m Individual Medley7. Likith Selvaraj  – 50m, 100m and 200m Breaststroke8. Srihari Nataraj – 100m Freestyle, 50m,100m and 200m Backstroke
1. Chahat Arora –  50m, 100m and 200m Breaststroke2. Jayaveena A V – 50m Breaststroke3. Shivani Kataria – 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m and 1500m Freestyle, 100m Butterfly 4. Rujuta Khade – 50m Freestyle5. Jyotsna Pansare – 50m backstroke, 50m Butterfly6. Maana Patel – 50m, 100m and 200m Backstroke7. Divya Satija – 50m and 100m Butterfly8. Soubrity Mondal – 100m and 200m Backstroke, 200m Individual Medley
Group I :Boys: 
1. Adhithya D – 100m Freestyle
2. Vedant Bapna – 50m, 100m and 200m Backstroke3. Sanjay C J – 200m Freestyle4. George Mathew Tanish – 50m, 100m and 200m Butterfly5. Hiten S Mittal – 50m Freestyle6. Swadesh Mondal – 50m, 100m and 200m Breaststroke, 200m and 400m Individual Medley7. Aryan Panchal – 200m Butterfly8. Harsh Saroha – 100m Butterfly9. Akashdeep Singh – 100m and 200m Backstroke10. Anurag Singh – 200m, 400m and 800m Freestyle11. Aryan Varnekar – 50m Butterfly12. Vikkas P – 50m Freestyle13. Veer Khatkar –
Girls:1. Suvana Bhaskar – 50m, 100m and 200m Backstroke2. Jhanvi Choudhury – 3. Khushi Dinesh – 200m, 400m, 800m and 1500m Freestyle4. Kenisha Gupta – 50m and 100m Freestyle, 50m, 100m and 200m Butterfly5. Swarna Harith – 6. Shivangi Sharma – 50m, 100m, 200m and 400m Freestyle
Group II :
Boys:1. Shoan Ganguly – 200m and 400m Freestyle, 100m and 200m Butterfly, 200m Individual Medley2. Sahil Laskar – 50m and 100m Backstroke, 50m and 100m Butterfly3. Vedant Madhavan – 50m, 100m and 200m Freestyle4. Devansh Parmar – 400m Freestyle, 50m, 100m and 200m Backstroke5. Utkarsh Patil – 200m Backstroke and 200m Butterfly6. Vidith Sankar – 100m and 200m Breaststroke7. Anshav Jindal –  
1. Apeksha Fernandes – 50m, 100m and 200m Breaststroke, 200m Butterfly and 200m Individual Medley2. Bhavya Sachdeva – 100m, 200m and 400m Freestyle3. Ridhima Veerendra Kumar – 50m, 100m and 200m Backstroke4. Nina Venkatesh – 100m Freestyle, 50m, 100m and 200m Backstroke and 50m and 100m Butterfly.
Coaches:1. Padamnabh Rao2. Bhushan Kumar3. Satish Suri4. Dr. Mohan Reddy
OC:1. Pradeep Kumar2. Nihar Ameen3. Jayarajan A C
Team Managers :1. Tapan Kumar Panigrahi2. Sarojini
DIVINGMen Senior:1. K Ramananda Sharma2. Siddarth Bajrang Pardeshi Group I :
Boys :1. Satish Kumar Prajapati2. N Willson Singh3. Joydeep Nayak
Girls :1. Ashna Chevli2. Bilwa Giram
Group II :
Boys:1. Y Premson Meitei
Girls:1. Megan De Almeida
Group III:
Boys:1. Indiver Sairam2. Kabir Rao
Girls:1. Palak Sharma
Coaches:1. M Kunj Kishor2. Yoenis Salazar Despaigne
Manager:1. Dara Chahal
WATER-POLOMen:1. Navneeth A(GK)2. Abhinav A M3. Anand M S4. Siddarth S S5. Vaishnav M6. Rounik Saha7. Soham Chaudhary8. Jayatha Jana9. Sounvik Dhali10. Bhavvesh C11. Vedant Kuthe12. Raj Patil13. Gulshan Kumar(GK)14. Amrish S15. Guruprasad Khaire(GK)
Women:1. Devi Santosh(GK)2. Kripa R R3. Surabhi V S4. Priya S P5. Anjal Y Kishore6. Mansi M7. Jasmin Khatun8. Pooja Das9. Krisha P10. Ria Das11. Ashmitha P12. Kanishka 13. Rasni Parvin(GK)14. Rafiqa Parvin 15. Iksha K
Coaches: 1. Saibal Shaw2. P Venugopala Pillai3. Shourya Karandikar4. P Alfred
Team Manager:1. Harinder Singh2. Biji Varghese