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16th FINA World Championships

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Ona Carbonell Ballestero: Natalia Ishchenko’s unexpected decision is worthy of admiration

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24.07.2015, 13:24 Sport
In an interview with a sports reporter of the OC’s Press Office, two-time medallist of the London 2012 Olympics, 16-time world synchronised swimming champion and captain of the Spanish team Ona Carbonell Ballestero clued him in that synchronised swimmers feel pretty comfortable performing at outdoor sports venues.

– Have you ever had a chance to practice and then perform at a football stadium?

– At the Barcelona 2013 World Championships, synchronised swimmers had to practice and perform at the football stadium. No wait, it was not a football stadium. So yeah, it seems like it’s my first time at the football stadium (smiles).

– How do training sessions held in an outdoor venue differ from the ones held in an indoor pool where sometimes it is airless and stifling?

– On the one hand it is much nicer to practice in an outdoor venue, simply because you can breathe in the fresh air. On the other hand the weather seems to let us down a bit. Let’s hope for the sun to start shining and the weather to become warmer.

– Is the music loud enough?

– As for the music, no worries, everything’s great!

– Who are the main rivals for gold at the Champs: Russia, China?

– Main rivals are surely the ones you’ve mentioned: Russia and China.

– Speaking of the Russian team, what were your first thoughts about Natalia Ishchenko’s decision to come back to high performance sports?

 – I was really happy for her. She is worthy of admiration. It’s great that she came back to the sport after giving birth to a child. By returning to the sport, she made a positive contribution to the development of synchronised swimming.

– What about Andrea Fuentes, your long-standing partner? Did you try to talk her into coming back to sports?

– I would have been unspeakably happy if she had decided to return to professional sport and particularly to the Spanish national team. Natalia Ishchenko’s comeback after giving birth proved that such things are possible. There are similar examples not only in our sport but in many other sports as well. Let’s hope for the best.

– What changes did your routine undergo after the European Championships?

– Solo free routine has been changed a bit whereas the technical routine is a completely new one.

– We know that back there in Spain you are a famous photo model. Don’t you want to go shopping and kind of renew your wardrobe here in Kazan when you have free time?

– I would have done it with great pleasure (smiles)! But unfortunately together with my team I'm taking off right after our competitions.

Press Office of Organising Committee for 16th FINA World Championships