Stallard and Roberts head for France

TWO Kilkenny swimmers will be hoping to make waves at a major international competition.

TWO Kilkenny swimmers will be hoping to make waves at a major international competition.

Jane Roberts and Shani Stallard have been selected as part of a 10-strong Irish team to compete at the European Short Course Swimming Championships in Chartres, France.

The event, which will be held in L’Odyssée, will see Ireland go up against 37 other European federations across four days of competition, which runs from tomorrow (Thursday) to Sunday.

Leading the Irish team are Olympians Barry Murphy and Sycerika McMahon. The entire squad will be in action on the opening day with Stallard competing in the 50m breaststroke while Roberts will swim in the 100m backstroke.

Stallard, who now swims with UCD, will also enter the 200m individual medley event on the opening day of the championships. Roberts, a member of the Kilkenny swim club, will also compete in the 100m freestyle.

“This is the first outing for our Olympians since the Games, giving them a chance to get back into international competition,” said lead coach Peter Banks. “The majority of the team is made up of our junior swimmers. These championships will give them a chance to experience senior level competition for the first time and is an opportunity for them to see what they need to be working towards.”

The championships will also act as an introduction for mixed relays for the first time in European competition. Mixed relay teams will consist of two male and two female swimmers, with Irish swimmers entered in all relay events.