Lewis White can cope with Games pressure

Paralympic medallist Lewis White believes he will be able to cope with the pressure of competing in the Commonwealth Games after a successful World Para Swimming World Series event.

White, who swims with City of Derby, won gold in the 400m freestyle (S9) in Copenhagen at the beginning of last month and followed that up with a silver in the 50m freestyle.

The 17-year-old says he is proud to be given the chance to represent Team England for the first time on Australia’s Gold Coast – and said his performances in Denmark were a nice boost ahead of the Games.

Lewis White
  • Age: 17
  • Club: City of Derby
  • Coach: Mandy Bell
  • CWG: Making debut at Gold Coast 2018

White, who won a bronze medal in the 400m freestyle at the Rio Paralympics in 2016, told the Derby Telegraph: “It was alright in Denmark, I would have preferred some faster times, some PBs, but you can’t PB every time.

“You focus on the overall process but that was a nice little boost and a nice way to ease myself into the Commonwealths.

“Time-wise, I’m definitely hoping to improve on that swim (in Denmark) at the Commonwealths.

“I think I will be able to deal with some of the pressure a little bit better.

“I’m proud to say I’ll be representing Team England at my first Commonwealth Games this year. Can’t wait to return to the Gold Coast and represent my country.”

Fight for a medal

White’s City of Derby head coach Mandy Bell said: “Lewis was prepared to go to the World Championships and when that didn’t happen we immediately set our sights on the Commonwealth Games.

“He hasn’t done anything but a training cycle to work for the Commonwealth Games since then.

“He is going into the Commonwealths second in the world (100m freestyle) so his chances, obviously, of a medal are fairly good with those statistics.

“You never know what the competition is going to bring. But I know that Lewis is going to bring his best and his best is pretty good, so they are going to have a bit of a fight for a medal in the finals once he gets there.”

White’s former coach, Mel Marshall, has also praised his hard work and dedication to reach the top.

She told the Derby Telegraph: “Lewis has always been very committed, very enthusiastic. And he has never given up, he is so determined.

“Right from the onset, as soon as he gets in the water. The hard work starts as soon as he dives in.

“And that has stood him in good stead really, he’s a really hard worker.

“To balance all of his schoolwork and everything over the years, he has done really, really well.”