National Backstroke Finalist
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Emmanuel's Year 10 contains one of the best backstroke swimmers in the country, James O'Connell, who recently reached the final of the National Schools Swimming Championships. Although he didn't achieve a position on the England team, which plays against Scotland, Ireland and Wales, he has high hopes for next year, when he will be at the top end of his age group.
James worked hard for his achievement, firstly going to Middlesbrough for the English Schools Trials. He swam five times at the trials with a first, second and third position in the 100m backstroke. When in London he didn't let his nerves overcome him although competition was high. He was ranked seventh after his heat swim when the eight fastest times made it to the final. James was disappointed to post a slower time in the final, coming home in eighth place.
James' attitude to the sport is impressive and he is a great example of hard work and determination. His progress next year will be eagerly followed.