Philippine Swimming Incorporated (PSI) has named four swimmers to the Philippine Team bound to represent the country at the 18th FINA World Championships (Long Course) in Gwanju, South Korea on July 21-28, 2019
Youth Olympian Nicole Justine Marie Oliva tops the list after registering Worlds QTB in three events, namely the 200m, 400m and 800m Freestyle events.
This is Oliva’s second World LC Championships appearance after she qualified and represented the country at its 17th edition two years ago in Budapest, Hungary.
Set to make their debut for Team Philippines at the world stage are 200m Butterfly Philippine national record holder, Remedy Rule, and 100m Freestyle Philippine national record holder, Luke Gebbie.
Rule has qualified in the 50m Free and 200m Fly events, while Gebbie in 100m Free event.
Heartbreakingly missing this year’s 50m Breast World QTB by 0.01 second, James Christian Deiparine completed the Philippine Team roster for Gwanju.
For a national federation having only three swimmers who have hit the qualifying times for the Worlds, the federation is allowed to send one more swimmer to complete the maximum of four swimmers an NSA (with 3 or less qualifiers) can send.
By virtue of Deiparine’s 28.36 time in the 50m Breast, clocked at the Swim Meet of Champions last month, which missed the 28.35 Worlds QTB, he was awarded by PSI the last remaining slot in the Philippine team.
This is his second stint at the Long Course World Championships, after he qualified to the PH Team in 2017.
This year, there were five swimmers who actually hit the Qualifying Time B (QTB).
Apart from Oliva, Rule and Gebbie, Jean-Pierre Khouzam and Jasmine Alkhaldi also hit the QTB in an event.
Khouzam has beaten the 2:00.80 QTB of the 200m Fly event at the TYR Pro Swim Series in USA, while Alkhaldi has also surpassed the 56.40 QTB in the 100m Freestyle event at last year’s Asian Games.
Khouzam though is still waiting for the release of his Philippine passport, thus missing the team.
Alkhaldi on the other hand was not nominated for team selection for the Worlds this year.
Amid not being nominated, PSI still clarified with FINA whether Alkhaldi’s time at the Asian Games last year can be used as qualifying time to this year’s World Championships; and the reply was negative.
This marks the first time for Alkhaldi not making it to the World Championships roster since her debut in 2011, so as Jessie Khing Lacuna.
The Philippine team bound to Gwanju will be mentored by coach Sherwin Santiago.