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Swimmers to appeal Rio omission

NZN 20/06/2016

Open water swimmers Kane Radford and Charlotte Webby have indicated they will appeal their omission from nomination for the New Zealand team to the Rio Olympics.

The pair fell short at the final qualification event in Portugal last week.

Radford finished 19th in the men's 10km event, 20 seconds off the final direct qualifying spot while Webby was 31st in the women's race.

Swimming's world body FINA offers one additional quota place for the leading swimmer from each of the five global regions - the Americas, Africa, Europe, Asia and Oceania - representing nations not already qualified.

With Australians Jarrod Poort and Chelsea Gubecka now qualified, Radford and Webby earned Rio spots as top Oceania finishers but Swimming NZ selectors opted not to nominate them.

The NZ Olympic Committee's nomination criteria is that athletes must be capable of a top 16 finish, with the potential for top eight.

Radford, Webby and their lawyers will hold a without prejudice meeting with SNZ selectors this week. If there is no resolution, they then have five days from that point to lodge an appeal to the Sports Tribunal.

Swimming NZ will make no further comment now the process has begun.

A online petition calling for Radford and Webby's inclusion in nominations for Rio has gathered more than 3200 signatures.

New Zealand's eight-strong pool squad to contest the Rio Olympics, headed by freestyler Lauren Boyle, was named in April.

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