Seven Irish swimmers are in action on Day One of the European Junior Championships in Israel.
The eight-strong squad carries the experience of medallists from last year’s Championships in Hungary — Mona McSharry, who won silver in the 100m Breaststroke and 50m Breaststroke bronze medal winner, Conor Ferguson.
McSharry is first up in the 50m Breaststroke, and after winning a bronze last year, the 16-year-old has since knocked over half a second off that time to go in as the fastest swimmer overall in 31.34 seconds.
Tallaght and National Centre Dublin swimmer Niamh Coyne will also compete in the 50m Breaststroke.
Robbie Powell and Jack McMillan are both fresh from a relay tour with the senior men’s squad.
The duo competed at the Mare Nostrum (France) and Sette Colli (Italy) meets in the past two weeks and will compete in the 50m Butterfly and 400m Freestyle respectively today.
Tempelogue’s Ellen Walshe goes in the heats of the 200m Butterfly, Rebecca Reid (Ards) goes in the 400m Individual Medley and Rachel Bethel the 800m Freestyle.
The top 16 in each event will make semi-finals with the fastest eight progressing to finals. Coach Andy Reid believes he has a “strong and relatively experienced team” in Israel.
Mona McSharry (Marlin’s SC, Donegal), Niamh Coyne (Tallaght SC), Ellen Walshe (Templeogue SC), Rebecca Reid (Ards SC), Rachel Bethel (Lisburn SC), Conor Ferguson (Bangor SC), Jack McMillan (Bangor SC) and Robbie Powell (Athlone SC).
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