Join us live on our Facebook and YouTube channels on Thursday 1st December at 19:30 for the Swim Wales National Club Awards 2022!
The Swim Wales Young Performance Athlete of the Year will raise the curtain on the Swim Wales National Club Awards 2022.
This category will celebrate the achievements of a performance athlete under the age of 18 (on 31st December 2022). The Swim Wales Performance team nominated their top three candidates to the Swim Wales Awards Panel, with the winner to be announced on Thursday evening.
It has been an unforgettable 12 months for our three nominees, who have not only made an outstanding contribution to Welsh aquatics with their performances in the pool, but have also been a credit to their sport away from the water.
Our first nominee is City of Liverpool swimmer Tyler Melbourne-Smith. Tyler has enjoyed domestic and international success in 2022 across a number of distances as his promising development continues.
His first major achievement of the year came at the 2022 British Championships, where he clinched a hat trick of middle and long distance triumphs, cementing his place as the number one junior across the United Kingdom in the 400m. 800m and 1500m Freestyle.
His domestic performances led to Team GB selection for 2022 European Junior Championships in Romania. Despite being a year younger than most of his competitors, Tyler finished 9th in the 800m and 1500m Freestyle, and 10th in the 400m Freestyle.
Following his international experience, he was back on home soil and back winning medals as he earned gold medals in the 17yr Age group 200m, 400m, 800m and 1500m Freestyle events at the 2022 British Summer Championships.
High diving starlet Ruby Thorne is our second nominee. The Dive London athlete has enjoyed a breakthrough 12 months that culminated with her competing against the world’s best at the Commonwealth Games.
Ruby, alongside diving partner Aidan Heslop, qualified for her first Commonwealth Games at the age of just 15 by winning the 10m mixed synchro event at the 2022 UK Home Nations Invitational. Ruby further established herself as one of the country’s brightest diving prospects by finishing fourth in the individual 10m Platform event at the British Elite Junior Championships.
But her career highlight to date came in Birmingham at the 2022 Commonwealth Games. Despite perforating her ear drum just days before she was due to step on the platform, she showcased her class alongside Heslop to finish eighth with a new Welsh record score of 284.28.
Our final nominee was the youngest of Thorne’s teammates at the Games. At just 14 years of age, Meghan Willis enjoyed a stunning 12 months as she established herself as one of the brightest talents anywhere in the world.
The Torfaen Dolphins para swimmer began her year in style with youth gold in the 400m Free at the World Para Series, Aberdeen in February and she backed it up with youth gold in the 200IM at the World Para Series in Lignano, Italy in March.
Her performances saw her qualify for Birmingham in the SM10 200IM, where she finished seventh with a career best performance in which she registered a significant personal best. At the end of the 2022 season Meghan was ranked ninth in the world for the for SM10 200IM, and she also secured a selection for the British Swimming World Class Programme at Podium Potential level.