Woodward Set For Global Tilt
It’s been a whirlwind 12 months in the surf and pool for Bradley Woodward who is racking up plenty of kilometres both in the air and at training with that trend set to continue as he prepares to jet off to Europe next month.
The Shelly Beach teen was named in the Australian Life Saving team that will be hitting the pool at The World Games in Wroclaw, Poland in late July and he is very much looking forward to pulling on the green and gold cap again.
“It’s going to be great experience and it’s exciting because it’s a multi-sport event. Hopefully after we finish competing we will get the chance to go and watch some other sports.
“I believe it will be very different to your typical surf carnival when it’s just the same people competing over a couple of days. Previously the closest I’ve been to an event like that was the Junior Commonwealth Games two years ago but I think this will be on a much bigger scale,” Woodward said.
Held every four years, the games is an opportunity for a number of different sports that aren’t affiliated with the Olympic Games to enjoy international competition, with surf lifesavers to show off their talents in the pool rescue competition.
Although what events Australia’s representatives will participate in has not yet been decided, it’s expected that Woodward will shoulder a packed program.
“I’m not sure what direction we will ultimately go in but at this stage I’ve been pencilled in for the relays, the 200 metre obstacle race and the 50 metre mannequin carry,” he said.
One thing that Woodward is really looking forward to before he hits the water on race day is the opportunity to be fully fit.
A broken ankle five months before the World Surf Life Saving Championships in The Netherlands last season caused him to miss some crucial training sessions prior to the event, but what the untimely injury also unearthed was a determined character.
“To miss a huge block of training right before a major event was obviously very frustrating but to get there and swim faster than I had ever swum before was incredibly satisfying.
“2017 will be a bit of a quiet year with no major championships after the games, so I haven’t set myself too many goals this season other than continuing to work hard and train to best of my ability.”
It hasn’t just been in the demanding sport of pool rescue where Woodward has shone in recent times. He also impressed at The Australian Swimming Titles earlier this year an event which doubled as the qualifier for the FINA World Championships.
He performed strongly at the competition and if he continues to develop could very well find himself in the mix for a place on the Open Team at next year’s Commonwealth Games.
As the lone New South Welshman on the team, Woodward is expecting a friendly ribbing especially given the closeness of the current Origin series.
“I think we will be a very close knit Australian team, and there will be a lot of friendly banter around the footy but it is all in good fun. We’re one team and I’ve known the others for years and been on teams with them all before and it is going to be great to represent Australia with them,” he said.
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Photograph - Bradley Woodward as a member of the Australian Lifesaving Team on the way to the 2016 World Championships
Thu 29 Jun 2017