Team GB Exclusive: Bradley-Smith relishes Baku challenge

Team GB Exclusive: Bradley-Smith relishes Baku challenge

07 July 2015 / 20:06

If you have your doubts about the merits of synchronised swimming then a five minute chat with Phoebe Bradley-Smith should sort you out.

The 18-year-old is part of the team that will head to Baku for the inaugural European Games and will take no shortage of passion with her on the way.

As a youngster traditional swimming didn’t quite cut it for Bradley-Smith but a chance encounter with the mesmerising hypnosis of synchronised swimming one Sunday was all that was needed to capture her imagination.

Since that day, some ten years ago, she doesn’t recall missing a session and what started as a hobby soon became something a lot more meaningful.

And now, on the eve of her biggest competition to date, it is clear that she doesn’t just have the skills in the water but also the rhetoric to match.

“I found swimming a bit boring if I’m honest but I was even sceptical about syncrho when it was first suggested to me,” she said.

“But I went along and gave it a go and there was something about it that hooked me and I don’t think I’ve missed a Sunday since then.

“Sometimes it can be hard to explain what it is that makes it so special but it’s my life now and I love it so much.

“It’s incredible to sit and watch the musical interpretations and to see what different teams come up with and how they put it all together.

“It’s not just about being in the pool, I love watching it and seeing what other people come up with and then going away and trying to be as good as they are.

“It really is a very interesting sport and it’s a great spectator sport as well which is something that people don’t often realise.

“When it all comes together it is really beautiful and a real spectacle that is a joy to watch.”

Bradley-Smith is no stranger to success having won four medals at the 2014 British Synchronised Swimming Championships as well helping England’s juniors win the Primorje Cup in the same year.

And she believes that the trip to Azerbaijan will help the ten-strong British team make the leap to the next level.

“For me Baku will be my first major competition so it is incredibly exciting and I can’t wait to sample the atmosphere and get the feel for a multi sport event like this,” she added.

“We only really get to train together once a week because we are all in college or school so it’s difficult to get together as a team.

“But when we do come together we try to make sure that we make the most of it and we are all super focused and committed.

“Being together for that amount of time as well is going to be massive in terms of bonding as a team.

“We went to Istanbul together recently and that was brilliant for us and we felt so much closer as a team.

“As a team we have the same drive and all want to be successful so badly so that means we all work so hard and that is all going to come together at Baku.”

© Sportsbeat 2015