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Final preparations are underway for Team NSW’s trip north to the Gold Coast to take on the rest of the country at the Australian Pool Rescue and Interstate Championships.

The Championships kick-off this Friday 9 August and are an opportunity for elite lifesavers to display the skills that keep them rescue ready for the start of the patrol season.

Putting the finishing touches on the team kits at Surf Life Saving NSW headquarters this week, Pool Rescue Championships Head Coach Susan McCaughtrie says this year’s team is one of the strongest she has seen.

“I couldn’t be more optimistic about the prospect of bringing back gold, given the high calibre of the team that has been chosen for this year’s event,” said McCaughtrie.

“It’s good to see the young kids coming through to compete in the Under 17 division like Zara Sharman from Bulli and Kaylah Holmes from Umina who competed at the World Championships” said McCaughtrie.

Kaylah Holmes and Ethan Garland have been named as co-captains of the Pool Rescue Team. James Koch, who is also a member of the Australian Lifesaving Team’s high-performance squad, has been named as Flag Bearer.

Team managers say that despite her age, Kaylah has demonstrated significant leadership abilities. She has been a member of the NSW State Team for several years and was recently a member of the Under 18 NSW Pool Rescue Development Team that went to New Zealand. They are confident that she will be able to unite the team and motivate them for a win.

Ethan Garland brings a wealth of experience to the team having been a member of the SLS NSW pool team since its inception. He was a member of the 2015 Under 18 Pool Rescue Development Team and a member of the 2016 Australian Youth Life Saving team that won in the Netherlands.

“The standard is very high with a mixture of experience and youth across our team of 23 athletes - with some new faces at state-level.” said Susan McCaughtrie.

“It is testament to the hard work that’s been done by the team members and their home coaches in the lead-up to the Championships that we have such a strong team.” she said.

The NSW Pool Rescue team will waste no time once they arrive on the Gold Coast. They have a joint-training session scheduled in the competition pool prior to the Championships beginning. The session will concentrate on relay training and changeovers which McCaughtrie says can make the difference between a win or a loss.

“The only challenge I see for the NSW team in this year’s Gold Coast competition is that we don’t have the home pool advantage.” said McCaughtrie.

“But I can’t wait to get up to the Gold Coast and stick it to Queensland on their home turf,” she said.

The 2019 Australian Pool Rescue Championships will be held on the Gold Coast from Friday 9 to Sunday 11 August inclusive. The event is held at the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre, Southport QLD. This event is sanctioned by the International Life Saving Federation (ILS).

Event information can be found on the SLSA website.


Tuesday 6 August 2019