King’s Lynn swimming club’s Kenny picked for 2017 Deaflympics

Oliver Kenny
Oliver Kenny
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Oliver Kenny of West Norfolk Swimming Club has been selected to represent Great Britain at the 2017 Deaflympics.

He has joined forces with the other East Region swimmers to try and raise much needed funds for the trip to Turkey.

In the weekend of the IOC Games funding announcement, the need for funds across sport has never been such a hot topic, with badminton particularly affected.

UK funding for the IOC Recognised Multi-Sport Games stands at: Olympics £265m; Paralympics £71m; Deaflympics £0.

The Deaflympics (formerly known as the Deaf Games), after the Olympics, are the oldest multisport IOC recognised games.

The 2017 event will be Oliver’s second Deaflympics having competed in Sofia 2013.

Oliver is a multi-finalist at the 2015 World Deaf Championships and will be aiming to repeat his great performances in Samsun, Turkey, next summer. Kenny currently holds 13 English Deaf national records.

Selected as well as Kenny are: Ciara Tappenden and Matthew Oaten (both Basildon & Phoenix SC) and Jasmine Seamarks (City Of Cambridge SC).

All four swimmers represented Great Britain at the 2015 World Deaf Championships in San Antonio, Texas, reaching multiple finals and setting various GB records.

Deaf athletes, due to a quirk in British Sport funding, receive no funding from the National Lottery or the governing body The ASA or British Swimming.

Thus the East Region swimmers each have to find in the region of £3,000 to represent GB at the International Olympic Committee’s sanctioned games.

Kenny, whose main events are Backstroke and Individual Medley, is a swim teacher in the West Norfolk area.

He has won the title of West Norfolk Disabled Sports Person Of The Year at the KL.FM West Norfolk Sports Awards for the past two years as West Norfolk Swimming Club continues to pick up accolades at the event.

l The swimmers are in desperate need of funding and any potential sponsors can contact the swimmers at deaf4SwimEast@gmail.com

The swimmers have also generated Crowdfunding, Facebook and Twitter pages using the Deaf4SwimEast tagline.

Crowdfunding Donations can be made online www.justgiving.com/crowdfund ing/Deaf4SwimEast

The first Deaf Games were in Paris 1924 and like the Summer Olympics the games are held every four years.

The last time the Deaf Games/Deaflympics were held in the UK was in London in 1935.