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Commonwealth Games qualifying swim times adjusted

The New Zealand Olympic Committee has agreed to some amendments of the criteria for swimmers seeking qualification for July’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

The change comes with qualification of relays and in four individual events.

As well as swimmers seeking nomination for relays as a complete team, selectors will be able to consider the individual accumulated times of swimmers in the strokes that make up each particular relay.

“In the past individual times have been considered with an appropriate adjustment for the takeover between swimmers. However we brought in a new qualifying procedure with complete teams attempting to achieve the standard,” said Swimming New Zealand High Performance Director, Luis Villanueva.

“This year, on the feedback from coaches and clubs, we have reduced the championships from six days to four.

“We believe that accordingly there is now potential for this to compromise swimmer performance for those who may seek nomination for individual events in the same session as a relay qualifying attempt.

“This adjustment recognises this and gives our swimmers the fairest opportunity to meet the nomination standard for relays. “Relays are an important part of our development programme and one of the best ways for promising swimmers to gain selection and experience the unique atmosphere of an international multi sport event,” he said.

Swimming New Zealand also sought the adjustment for four individual events in line with the nomination criteria of a time no faster than the 16th in the world. Initially the time frames for notification meant that qualifying times were set against times in the 2012 world ranking. Following the end of 2013, Swimming New Zealand reworked the procedure based on a world ranking with two swimmers per country and New Zealand swimmers not considered and requested a change on those qualifying times that were slightly faster than the resulted Top 16.

“The nomination times had to be submitted before the conclusion of the world championships and the NZOC Selectors have now reconsidered and made these adjustments.”

The change in times is for the women’s 400m and 800m freestyle and 200m backstroke along with the men’s 400m freestyle have been adjusted. The nomination time for the women’s 400m freestyle is now 4:07.69 (from 4:07.50), the women’s 800m freestyle now 8:30.12 (from 8:29.73), women’s 200m backstroke now 2:10.15 from 2:09.53 and the men’s 400m freestyle now 3:48.67 (from 3:48.60).

The official Commonwealth Games Trials take place as part of the State New Zealand Championships at the West Wave Aquatic Centre in Henderson from April 8-11. The Championships have heats starting at 11am and finals from 7pm, while the evening sessions will also be broadcast live on Sky Television.

The amended nomination criteria for the Commonwealth Games and Youth Olympic Games can be viewed here.