Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Yannick Agnel - NOT chosen for the 200m Freestyle at European Championships

I can't figure this one out. For the life of me I thought Agnel did enough in the semi of French Nationals to get selected for the Euros. The French selection policy was already ridiculous but leaving Agnel out of the 200 where he would have challenged for Gold makes zero sense. You have one of the most talented swimmers we've ever seen making his first appearance at a major senior international competition, perfect time to be gathering experience ahead of Worlds in 2011 and London 2012... and you are sitting him in his best event. Way to go Fédération Française de Natation.

(Agnel will swim the 400m Free, 4 x 100m and 4 x 200m Free relays.)

See for yourselves here.

Les sélectionnés aux Championnats d’Europe

17 nageurs :
Yannick Agnel (400 NL, 4x200 NL, 4x100 NL)
Alain Bernard (50 NL, 100 NL, 4x100 NL)
Frédérick Bousquet (50 papillon, 50 NL)
Hugues Duboscq (100 brasse, 200 brasse)
Sébastien Fraysse (400 NL)
Fabien Gilot (50 NL, 4x100 NL)
Antton Haramboure (4x200 NL)
Camille Lacourt (50 dos, 100 dos)
Clément Lefert (4x200 NL)
Amaury Leveaux (50 NL)
William Meynard (100 NL, 4x100 NL)
Anthony Pannier (1500 NL)
Eric Ress (200 dos)
Sébastien Rouault (400 NL, 800 NL, 1500 NL)
Benjamin Stasiulis (200 dos)
Boris Steimetz (4x100 NL)
Jérémy Stravius (50 dos, 100 dos, 4x200 NL)

14 nageuses :
Coralie Balmy (200, 400 NL, 4x100 NL, 4x200 NL)
Cloé Credeville (200 dos)
Sophie de Ronchi (200 4N)
Ophélie-Cyrielle Etienne (400, 800 NL, 4x100 NL)
Margaux Farrel (4x200 NL)
Lara Grangeon (200 papillon, 200 4 N, 4x200 NL)
Mélanie Henique (50 papillon)
Mylène Lazare (4x200 NL)
Aurore Mongel (100 et 200 papillon)
Camille Muffat (200 NL, 400 NL, 200 4N, 4x200 NL)
Aurélie Muller (1500 NL)
Alexandra Putra (200 dos)
Hanna Shcherba (4x100 NL)
Angéla Tavernier (4x100 NL)

Forfait : Alexianne Castel.

Hat tip to Dublincat (twitter.com/dublincat11) for bringing my attention to this story


  1. As stupid as it is to leave Agnel out of the 200, it might be even moreso to leave Gilot out of the 100... even though we knew he didn't make the prelim cut. That said, Agnel's could be a simple mistake, since I've seen at least one more on the list. Bousquet finished fifth in the 100 free at Nationals (ahead of Leveaux and Agnel), so he should definitely be selected for the relay.

    We need to remember that Agnel has almost no experience on a major stage (compared to even, say, Gilot), so it's probably best not to overhype him (yet, anyway...). Winning at European Juniors and Paris Open means very little in the grand scheme of things. Remember, he went slower in every single final at French Nationals. Not saying he won't be a star, but there is much more to the story than times.

  2. We expected Gilot would be a victim of this odd system. Agnel has come as a shock atleast to me. I think Gilot could have challenged Bernard for the Gold, however without him I would be extremely surprised if anyone beats Bernard over the 100m in Budapest (so long as Bernard doesn't take it easy in the heats and misses semis/finals which is he prone to doing). The Russians will be a threat, Nystrand possibly... but Bernard should be a cut above them.

    Speaking as a European I will tell you why Agnel is so exciting. Australia and the US, with Thorpe and Phelps, have experienced relatively recently that uber-talented youngster who transcends the sport to become a global superstar. Europe has never quite acheived that on the men's side. We've had Popov, VDH, Salnikov & Michael Gross but they didn't have the impact of Thorpe & Phelps. From everything we've seen from Agnel over the last 12-13 months he looks like that 'once in a generation' type of swimmer. I'm not sure its even possible to over-hype a 17/18 year old guy that has just swum a 47.80 relay split, a 1:46 200m Free and 3:46 400m Free?

    I wouldn't pay too much attention to the slower finals at French Nationals, it seems to be more of an effect of the selection policy where he had to swim his fastest during semi-finals. Look at the progression from heats/semis/finals at European Juniors and Paris Open. I don't think he has a problem getting faster during meets.

  3. Before the 2003 Worlds, one of the Australian coaches (forget who) called Phelps fairly inexperienced and said he had done nothing on the major stage. This is after his 200 fly world title/world record, and by that point he had world records in both IMs and was just off in the 100 fly. But he hadn't actually done anything yet. He had a single gold in the biggest stage and none else. Of course, he ended up with four golds, five world records, etc, etc... by then, he had done something!

    Since only two French guys are swimming the race in Budapest, Bernard (and Meynard for that matter) should have no trouble making top-16. The only big trouble for him has been when two French guys beat him. 50 could be a different story.

    For the relay, I would have the two fastest guys with the most experience saved for finals. That would be Bernard and Gilot. Prelims go with Agnel, Meynard, Steimetz, and Bousquet (that order). Leveaux, who knows? He has not been swimming well at all. Bousquet should be good for the relay. He didn't get to swim the 100 free this weekend at Sectionals (rumors are his back was bothering him, nothing official), but he won't have a problem anchoring the prelim relay in a fast time.

  4. Hey men. This's just a stupid mistake.
    Take a look. Where are two men for 200 free?
    Nobody? Greetings from Poland