Paralympian Chris takes charge

Droitwich Advertiser: New man: Chris Xifaras. New man: Chris Xifaras.

FORMER Paralympian Chris Xifaras has been named Bromsgrove Swimming Club’s new head coach.

Xifaras competed at the 1992 Barcelona Games and arrives at Bromsgrove with a wealth of experience, having held four British records in the 14 national championships he swam.

He also set a European record at 100-metre breaststroke and all three world short-course records in the 50m butterfly, 100m breaststroke and 200m individual medley.

Xifaras aims to help the club’s young swimmers develop their skills and improve the already-impressive roster.

Anyone interested in joining the club can contact them via the website bromsgrovesc.

co.uk n Bromsgrove swimming star Olivia Gardner struck gold at last weekend’s Cardiff International Open.

In her last top level meet before July’s National Championships in July, the Wyre Forest Club member took victory in the 12 to 13 years 100-metre backstroke.

But she wasn’t finished there, claiming a silver in the 400m freestyle and bronze medals in the 200m backstroke and 800m freestyle, along with fourth places in the 200m freestyle and 100m backstroke. Glory in Wales continues the 13-year-old’s fine form this year.

She had already won gold at the Worcestershire Long Distance Championships earlier in the year, taking the 800m in nine minutes 32.77 seconds to set a new county record.

Gardner also finished third overall against swimmers four years older than her in the open category.

She was also one of the Kidderminster-based club’s top performers at the Midland Age Group Championships at the beginning of June.

There Gardner reached the final of the 100m backstroke, where she finished sixth and was also 10th overall in the 800m freestyle.

The Aston Middle School pupil, who lives in Finstall, trains with Wyre Forest Swimming Club.

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