Rising swimming star Wiffen eyes historic Commonwealth medal (VIDEO)

Loughborough University student Daniel Wiffen has set a target to become the first Team Northern Ireland swimmer to win a medal at the Commonwealth Games.

Wiffen has enjoyed a phenomenal year, appearing at his first Olympics in Tokyo last summer before breaking the 15mins mark in the 1500m at the FINA World Championships in Budapest – the first Irish swimmer to do so.

Now, with the Commonwealth Games due to commence, the 20-year-old has his sights on more records and even a podium place at major championships:

“From Tokyo to now, I've made massive jumps. I've made my first world final – short course and long course – and then obviously the Commonwealth Games, and we're going to build on from that too.

“I just like to keep on progressing and hopefully onwards towards a medal at the Olympics in 2024.”

Wiffen, who trains under the guidance of experienced coach Andi Manley, explained to Loughborough Sport the importance of working alongside such a strong training group at the Pool of Dreams on campus.

“The training group that we have is really helping a lot,” he said.

“We’ve got world champions and that's given me a lot of confidence going into the Commonwealth Games…I'm still going to be nervous but I'm just going to hopefully smash it.

“I'd like to be the first Irish male to medal in the Commonwealths, I don't think it's ever happened before, so that's my goal.”

Andi Manley added:“He was already a world junior level athlete, and he'd represented Ireland at a few competitions before, but since he's come in, he's taken nearly 50 seconds off his 1,500 time in the last two years.

“Clearly there's been some good work done with him as a younger swimmer…he's very hungry, he knows what he wants to achieve and he works extremely hard day in, day out.

“It's a combination of everything and having that environment and that high performance culture, I guess that just feeds through the team and that's getting him the success.”

Loughborough’s dedicated 2022 Commonwealth Games website features all the latest news, videos, and medal tables from Birmingham.

Notes for editors

Press release reference number: 22/143

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, named the best university in the world for sports-related subjects in the 2022 QS World University Rankings and University of the Year for Sport by The Times and Sunday Times University Guide 2022.

Loughborough is in the top 10 of every national league table, being ranked 7th in The UK Complete University Guide 2022, and 10th in both the Guardian University League Table 2022 and the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022.

Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and is in the top 10 in England for research intensity. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

The Loughborough University London campus is based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and offers postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities. It is home to influential thought leaders, pioneering researchers and creative innovators who provide students with the highest quality of teaching and the very latest in modern thinking.