The Westerner

London calling for Tamika

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Source: Lee Oliver

Camp Mountain’s Tamika Domrow has gained selection in Australia’s Olympic synchronised swimming team.

Camp Mountain’s Tamika Domrow has gained selection in Australia’s Olympic synchronised swimming team.

Having people make jibes about her sport is like water off a duck’s back for Tamika Domrow.

The synchronised swimmer from Camp Mountain has done something nearly all of us will never achieve – represent Australia at the Olympic Games.

The 22-year-old is off to the Olympics again, having been named in the nine-member national synchronised swimming team for this year’s Games in London.

It will be Domrow’s second time competing at the world’s biggest multi-sport event, after she helped Australia make a splash at the 2008 Olympics in China.

“Hopefully I won’t be as nervous the second time around… and I’ll know what to expect and what the atmosphere is like, so I’ll be more prepared,” Domrow said.

“We know we’re not likely to medal but we still have that pressure from ourselves and our coaches because we do want to swim well and hopefully better our score from last time.”

Australia finished a credible seventh in Beijing four years ago, the team’s best result in Olympic competition.

Domrow then quit the sport, but Australia’s success in China whet her appetite for a comeback to the pool 18 months later.

“I definitely needed a break from everything after the Olympics but I really missed it and that’s why I went back,” she said.

“There’s a lot of reasons why I came back, and there were a lot of aspects (of the sport) that I missed, and you can always better yourself in a sport as well.”

While spending nine hours in a pool each day might sound like fun, it’s part of the Australian team’s arduous training regime that also includes fitness sessions and acrobatics and gymnastics cross training.

The women currently train six days a week at the Gold Coast and undertake “really intense” training camps, featuring nine-hour pool sessions each day, once a fortnight.

“I just came out of one (training camp) and that one was 13 days,” Domrow said.

Domrow believes the tenacity of the team’s coaches from Russia, the world leaders in synchronised swimming, held the Aussies in good stead ahead of the London Olympics starting in July.

“Our coaches are training us very hard but we know that they obviously want us to improve and do our best,” she said.

“All of us in the team are all going (to the Olympics) for the same reasons.

We’re hoping to equal what we did in Beijing, if not better it.”

As part of their preparation for the Olympics, Domrow and her Australian teammates will compete in Perth, Spain and New Caledonia in the coming months.

“It’s pretty amazing and it’s a pretty good feeling to go somewhere and represent Australia, especially because our country’s the best,” Domrow said.

On the off chance she’s not training, Domrow works as an apprentice animal carer at the Samford Pet Resort, a business that supports her sporting career “no matter what I throw at them or how often I’m away”.

“It’s really hard to find a great employer like that,” Domrow said.

Swimmer Bronte Barratt, who hails from Wights Mountain, has qualified for her second Olympic Games, while Joyner triathlete Emma Jackson is also seeking Olympic selection.

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