Hyland hopeful he can fulfill Olympic quest

BRENDAN Hyland believes he has every chance of making the cut for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo when he contests the 2019 FINA World Swimming Championships in Gwangju, South Korea next week.

The Tallaght Swim Club and National Centre competitor will line out in his first event on this stage when he goes in the 200m Butterfly heats on Tuesday, hoping to build on his personal best of 1.57:21 and clock a 1:56.49 that would effectively see him qualify for next year’s Summer Games.

Brendan Hyland 180719

Tallaght Swim Club and National Centre swimmer Brendan Hyland will be targeting Olympic qualification when he lines out in the World Championships next week.

“My PB is 1.57:21 so I’m .7 off it [the qualification time]” Hyland told The Echo. “I’ll definitely need to give it a good whack in the heats, but it’s very doable.

“If there’s a place to do it, it’s here. It’s a three metre-deep pool, the facilities are great and you’re up against top competition.

“Realistically I’ll be in Lane One or Two and we’ll be tearing down that last 50. Heats at this level are very fast. Even the fastest guys in the world will be swimming a second or less than what’ll they do to win it [the Championship].

“Right now I’m just enjoying the experience because there’ll be enough excitement and tension on Tuesday” he said.

The following day will see him race in the 200m IM before he turns his attention to relay competition with the Men’s 4x200m Freestyle on Friday and the 4x100m Medley on Sunday.

All provide opportunities for Olympic qualification, although Hyland will be hoping he can produce his best ever performance on Tuesday and fulfil a life-long goal then.

Among the other Irish competitors in action at the World Championships will be another Tallaght swimmer Niamh Coyne and Templeogue Swim Team star Ellen Walshe.

The former, a Youth Olympic Games silver medallist in the 100m Breaststroke will be lining out in this very event in Gwangju on Monday hoping to better her PB of 1.07:87.

Coyne will also contest the 200m Breaststroke on Thursday and is likely to join Walshe on the Mixed Medley Relay the previous day.

Walshe, a winner of four gold medals at this year’s Irish Open Long Course Championships, will be one of the first of the Irish swimmers into action with the Women’s 100m Butterfly on Sunday.

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