2 Olympic champs, 1 4x Games Medallist, 3 Defenders Lead 31 Dolphins To World Titles

The Dolphins - Budapest-bound for 2017 world titles - by Delly Carr / Swimming Australia Ltd

Olympic champion Mack Horton and Kyle Chalmers, Emma McKeon, the most successful Australian woman at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games with four medals, and defending world champions Mitch Larkin, Emily Seebohm and Bronte Campbell lead school of 31 dolphins bound for Budapest in July for the World Championships

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They certainly made very generous use of ‘relay cover’ but, in fairness, almost all selections can be fairly defended and, for the most part, discretional selections which will lead to individual swims are going to the younger/newcomers who will hopefully benefit from the international exposure.

The one event where I cannot see a potential entrant is the W400IM but that’s fair enough as nobody was within the same postcode as the QT. Seebohm is unlikely to swim the W200IM so there’s only likely to be one W200IM entrant (Ngawati). Ditto W200FLY (McKeon decline, Throssell sole starter) and only one in W200BRS (McKeown Sr). Also potential of sole entrant W400FR (Titmus) unless Ashwood takes up invite/swims a 400FR time between now and close of entries.

Lewis (likely 4X200 “cover”) will almost certainly start M200IM but less certain re M400IM, leaving possibility of no entrant. Incerti selected ostensibly for M4X100 but will they give the 2nd M100BK start to him (2nd place finisher) or Beaver (qualified in M200BK) ? Two male flyers selected in Morgan & Irvine as well as 2 breaststrokers in Wilson & Cave.

Will leave comment re initial view of individual medal prospects until later but these are my initial instincts re relay prospects:

W4X100: WITH C1, would still be legit favourites. Minus C1, still very much in the mix but have come back to the field. Likely medal but colour open to speculation

W4X200: we’re talking McKeon then a bunch of 1.58 swimmers. It would be hoped that at least 1-2 of these can take some steps forward (at least to a sub 1.57 split but they’re probably needing all 3 to do so in order to make the podium. Not out of medal calculations but more an outside bet

W4XMED: A medal prospect but not the most secure. Most likely conditional on (1) McKeon actually swimming the fly leg she’s capable of and (2) C2 being in better condition than here. If (1) doesn’t occur, then C2 is going to be coming from a long way back

M4X100: McEvoy & Chalmers are both known factors but Cartwright’s advance a massive boost. If he can stand up in Budapest and they can get a 48mid from the 4th leg then they’re potentially in minor medal calculations. Looking forward in time, here’s hoping that more than just Cartwright can step up. I’d far rather see opportunities over the next couple of years given to them than questionable superannuants like Magnussen and Roberts

M4X200: Hhhmm. The relay that so often looks good on paper but never seems to get 4 swimmers firing on the same day. Certainly no real “killer” legs evident at this point. Horton can split sub 1.46, Chalmers maybe. The issue will be getting the 1.47men splitting 1.46s. Will prob call on McEvoy but he’s erratic in this relay and would rather not call on McKeon

M4XMED: For this relay to medal, Larkin will need to lift immensely from this level at this meet. Otherwise Chalmers or McEvoy will be requiring a comeback of Lazarus proportions to rescue a podium. BRS leg significantly weakened by Packard’s absence

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