Games place looms

by Anonymous Author

Selwyn Swim School para-athlete Celyn Edwards is closing in on qualifying for the 2018 Commonwealth Games.

The 16-year-old World Para Swimming series swimmer will compete in Berlin this week, guided by Ben Close, head coach at the Selwyn Aquatic Centre in Rolleston and a New Zealand Para Swimming team coach.

The Berlin competition is the final World Series event and will determine overall winners of world titles.

At the event, Celyn will receive an International Classification, which means he will be eligible to qualify for the Commonwealth Games to be held on the Gold Coast next year, in the 100m breaststroke and 200m individual medley. 

Edwards currently holds 21 national records in his Paralympic S8 classification, across all strokes and multiple distances.

“This is Celyn’s first time representing New Zealand and it will be an opportunity for him to represent not only New Zealand, but Selwyn, at top international level,” coach Ben Close said.

“It’s very exciting for both of us to be part of a high performance environment and gain invaluable experience for future pinnacle meets, such as the Commonwealth Games, World Championships, and Paralympics.”

Close said the event will expose him to international-level coaching practices, which he will share with teaching staff at the Selwyn Aquatic Centre who work with physically impaired athletes and swimmers.

Edwards has been a member of the Selwyn Swim School since 2013 and is one of five athletes from New Zealand competing in Berlin while Close is one of the team’s three coaches.

The Selwyn Aquatic Centre in Rolleston was recently named in the top five most accessible aquatic centres in New Zealand.