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#RioGoldRush: Jamaica’s swimmers take the plunge

Published:Sunday | August 7, 2016 | 11:05 AM
Alia Atkinson

 Ryon Jones,‎ Staff Reporter

Jamaica’s two swimmers will dive into action inside the Olympics Aquatics Stadium on the third day of the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Highly fancied medal prospect, Ali Atkinson, will be first up when she swims out of lane five in the fifth and penultimate heat of the women's 100m breaststroke at 12:03 p.m.

Meanwhile, Timothy Wynter is scheduled to take the plunge at 12:11 p.m. swimming out of lane five in heat one of five in the men’s 100m backstroke.

Atkinson, who narrowly missed out on a medal by 47 milliseconds at the London 2012 Games, is making her fourth Olympic appearance.

This will mark Wynter’s first appearance on the big stage.

PROFILE - Alia Atkinson
Age: 27 years old
High School: Charles W. Flanagan High School
Tertiary Education: Texas A&M International universities
Event(s): Women’s 100m breast-stroke
Personal Best: 1:02.36s

Interesting Facts:
She began swimming at age four at the YMCA in St Andrew, Jamaica.

In 2012, Alia won silver medals at the FINA World Short Course Swimming Championships in Istanbul, Turkey, becoming the first Jamaican swimmer to medal at a global tournament.

Alia Atkinson’s time tied Ruta Meilutyte’s world record of 1:02.36 from the Moscow stop of the FINA World Cup.

Alia Atkinson is the first ever black woman to win a world swimming title.

Alia Atkinson works with the International Swimming Hall of Fame in Florida to promote swimming to youngsters from different communities.

PROFILE - Timothy Wynter
Age: 20 years old
High School: Phillips Academy
Tertiary Education: University of Southern California
Event(s): Men’s 100m backstroke
Personal Best: 56.15

Interesting Facts:
Wyter  holds the short and long course national records in the 50m (26.47) and 100m backstroke (56.15).

Wynter has a wealth of experience having competed at the 2014 Youth Olympics, the 2014 Commonwealth Games, the 2013 FINA Junior World Championships and the 2012 Short Course World Championships.

Has been working closely with top Jamaican swimmer Alia Atkinson