The opening event press conference gets underway this Sunday, 11 December at 12:00 CET local time (01:00 GMT), at the Melbourne Sport and Aquatics Centre as a lead-in to FINA World Swimming Championships that will take place from 13-18 December 2022.

Swimmers from 160 nations will line up across 46 events over the six days of action, with an impressive USD 2.16 million prize purse on offer. 

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Australia’s longstanding success in swimming comes matched with Melbourne’s experience in hosting top-level events. This includes when the city hosted the 12th FINA World Championships 2007 and five consecutive editions of the FINA Swimming World Cup from 2000-2004.

The press conference will commence with a host of sports governance leaders, including FINA President Husain Al-Musallam, FINA Executive Director Brent Nowicki and Swimming Australia CEO Eugénie Buckley.

Headlining Athletes

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Ten-time FINA World Championship gold medallist and two-time Olympic swimming champion Lilly King of the United States is among the headlining athletes attending the press conference.

The roster of world-class athletes at the press conference also includes the Olympic medallist and five-time FINA World Champion Madison Wilson who will represent the Australian Dolphins in their home pool.

Image Source: Clive Rose/Getty Images

David Popovici of Romania will also be on the podium for the kick-off event, as the 18-year-old looks to add the 100m and 200m freestyle golds in the 25m pool to the two titles he won earlier this year at the 19th FINA World Championships.

While Popovici set the long course world record in the 100m freestyle in 2022, he’s not the only athlete that can claim the world record over the 100m distance and freestyle stroke as Kyle Chalmers of Australia will also compete in Melbourne. Chalmers claimed his world record in the 25m pool last fall and is coming into these championships having gone three-for-three in the event during the FINA Swimming World Cup 2022 season.

Some of the biggest names in swimming internationally will also take part, including Canada’s Maggie MacNeil and Kylie Masse, Adam Peaty of Great Britain, and Chad le Clos of South Africa.

Joining Chalmers and Wilson for the Australian Dolphins are athletes who contested the FINA World Championships in Budapest and the 2022 Commonwealth Games. The opportunity to compete on home soil will take a special meaning for Victorian athletes including Mack Horton, Jenna Strauch, Matt Temple, Sam Williamson, David Schlicht and Brendon and Mikayla Smith.  The home-grown Victorian talent will be joined by leading Australian Dolphins including Emma McKeon, Mollie O’Callaghan and Kaylee McKeown.

FINA Extraordinary Congress

In addition to the 16th edition of the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m), the programme also features the FINA Extraordinary General Congress on 12 December. The Congress will take place at the Melbourne Congress and Exhibition Centre, starting at 11:00 local time (AEDT). Accredited event media are invited to attend the Congress as observers.

Registration opens at 10:15 local time. As seating at the Congress is limited, accredited event media seating will only be allocated on a first-come, first-serve basis. Tickets to the event will be distributed at the Congress check-in booth before the event.

The Congress will also be streamed on the FINA YouTube Channel.