First swimming staff appointments announced for Commonwealth Games

The first appointments to the Commonwealth Games swimming leadership team have been made and will see head coach Mel Marshall leading the charge to Birmingham.

Decorated coach Marshall will be joined by Diane Elliot in her role as sports science lead and Rod Wardle, who will act as team manager.

Grant Robins, Team England’s swimming Team Leader, said: “I am so pleased to have appointed people of this calibre into the leadership team for the Birmingham Commonwealth Games.

“Mel, Diane and Rod are outstanding experts in their field and will help me arrive in Birmingham having executed a great planning and preparation period and being race-ready in Birmingham.

“A home Games is a fantastic opportunity to showcase our sport and with these appointments, it makes me very, very proud.”

‘Incredible privilege’

Marshall, who in 2021 coached Adam Peaty, Luke Greenbank and Anna Hopkin to Olympic podium success, commented: “To be leading out the CWG England Team at a home Commonwealth Games is an incredible privilege, particularly off the back of an incredibly challenging two years for the nation.

“While it’s been the NHS’s job to take care of health over these last few years, it’s sports job to take care of hope.

“I hope to support and illuminate the people I am lucky enough to work with to shine some light for the nation in what promises to be a fantastic Games.

“To those who have given me this opportunity, I thank you and it’s my promise to do you, this nation and its people proud.”

‘One team philosophy’

Elliot, who is Swim England’s sports science and medicine manager, added: “It’s a great honour to be appointed as SSSM lead for Birmingham 2022.

“To be part of the leadership team at the home Games is incredibly exciting.  I hope myself and my team of sports science and medicine staff can assist the swimmers to make this the most successful home Games ever.”

More appointments will be made in due course ahead of the commencement of the Games on 28 July.

Speaking on his selection, Wardle said: “It’s always going to be a huge honour to be selected to represent your country at any level.

“I am proud to have the opportunity to work as a part of the leadership team under Grant Robins.

“I will be aiming to do my utmost to help both the support staff and the swimmers create our ‘one team’ philosophy in the belief that we can make Birmingham 2022 the most successful home Games.”