NINE swimmers are preparing for a 10,000 mile trip to Australia ahead of next month’s Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.
Athletes from Team Scotland will begin their journey on Saturday with Northern Irish and English counterparts following in the coming days.
The swimmers, who all train at the National Swimming Academy at the University of Stirling, will join graduates and triathletes Grant Sheldon and Marc Austin who have already arrived on the Gold Coast.
Professor Gerry McCormac, principal of University of Stirling, said: “The countdown to the Commonwealth Games is well underway and the entire university community is incredibly proud that our swimmers, their coach Steven Tigg, and our former triathlete scholars will be flying the flag on the Gold Coast.
“Everyone here at the university will be watching intently and cheering them on as they bid for success in Australia. I wish them all a safe trip and the very best of luck.”
All the athletes train under programmes led by Mr Tigg, who will travel with Team Scotland to the games.
Reigning Commonwealth champion Ross Murdoch and double Olympic medallist Duncan Scott will represent Scotland alongside European silver medallist and World finalist Kathleen Dawson, and former World Junior Champion Craig Benson.
They will be joined by Scott McLay and 2015 Youth Games silver medallist Craig McLean.
Mr McLay, a first-year sport and exercise science student, will compete in the 50m butterfly, 4x100m and 50m freestyle.
He said: “It feels incredible to be selected for the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.
“I remember watching it at Glasgow 2014 and thinking I would never be at the level, and now that I am, it just means a lot to me.
“I want to produce the best performance I possibly can.”
Mr Bain, a third-year accountancy student, said: “It is the biggest competition of my life so far – I just want to get out there, feel the atmosphere, and race under those conditions. Hopefully I’ll enjoy it.”
Jon Doig, Team Scotland Chef de Mission on the Gold Coast, said: “The university has provided a strong core of successful athletes at past games and we look forward to the 2018 generation continuing this proud record.
The 2018 Commonwealth Games will be held on the Gold Coast, Queensland, in Australia between April 4 and 15.
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