Success at short course nationals

Matthew Levy. Photo: Swimming Australia

FOUR Jewish swimmers represented their states and clubs against the nation’s best at the 2018 Australian Short Course Swimming Championships held in Melbourne late last month.

North Sydney-based Paralympian Matthew Levy, 31, competed in five events and finished the meet with two medals plus a major swimming award.

Levy, who has cerebral palsy and vision impairment, won gold in the men’s multi-class 200m individual medley, touching the wall in 2:35.78 to earn 972 multi-class points, 11 points in front of runner-up Ricky Betar.

He also won a silver medal in the men’s multi-class 50m butterfly, won by Nicholas Layton, and topped off the memorable meet by being named the Paralympic Swimmer of the Year at the 2018 Swimming Australia Awards.

“I don’t do this sport for the awards, but they are nice when they come your way,” Levy said. “What a great year – thanks for the support.”

Back in the pool, Benno Negri, 20, was part of Melbourne Vicentre Swimming Club’s silver medal winning team which finished the men’s 4x100m freestyle relay in 3:16.13, less than three seconds behind Queensland-based team TSS Aquatic.

The best result of Negri’s three individual events was coming 14th in the men’s 50m freestyle in 22.55 seconds, an event that included swimming superstars including Cameron McEvoy.

Northcote Swim Club representative Ashley Weill, 17, came fifth in the heats and sixth (2:11.25) in the final of the women’s 200m backstroke, won by Australian Dolphins team member Emily Seebohm.

And Southport Olympic (Qld) member Joshua Blumberg, 23, came 14th in the men’s 50m breaststroke heats.

SHANE DESIATNIK

Matthew Levy at the awards ceremony.