Hannah Miley has been dropped from British Swimming’s world-class performance squad, dealing a huge blow to her hopes of reaching a fourth and final Olympics at Tokyo 2020.
The 29-year-old, who loses her Lottery funding, was the biggest name missing from the 54-strongsquad list which is headed by Olympic champion Adam Peaty and Scotland’s European gold medallist Duncan Scott.
British Swimming chiefs defended axeing Gairloch’s Miley less than two months after the Scot claimed European Championship bronze in Glasgow. Her Stirling-based rival Aimee Wilmott, who pipped her to the Commonwealth Games 400m medley gold in April also lost out.
A British Swimming spokesperson said: “This time last year, Hannah, Aimee Wilmott and Andrew Willis were all put on reviews post-Commonwealth Games and given half-year funding.
“That was reviewed after Gold Coast and now they are no longer funded swimmers. We have a maximum number of places from UK Sport and we have three less than last year on the programme.”
Nine Scots were included with teenage prospects Cassie Wild, Keanna Macinnes and Katie Robertson earning spots for the first time.
Miley had admitted she would review whether to continue her sterling career at the season’s end. But, following August’s Europeans at Tollcross Pool, British Swimming’s performance director Chris Spice urged Miley to continue in the sport at a relatively veteran age with her experience prized as a role model.
“She is just a machine,” he said. “And one of the leaders in the team. She offers so much to everyone else, not just performance, I hope she keeps going.”