Mighty Matilda Excels in the Pool
Glenmore Park student Matilda Mobbs continues to set the junior swimming world alight, smashing a 16-year long state record at a club event this year. She has also qualified to compete in the National Age Championships in multiple events and dreams of one day representing Australia at the Paralympic Games.
Matilda, who was diagnosed with Spina Bifida at a young age, broke a 16-year long state record in June and is now the NSW State 13 Years & Under S8 400m Freestyle SC record holder. Her time of 7.14 in the 400m event beat the previous record of 8.33.
“Due to COVID-19 cancellations, Matilda hasn’t been able to compete as much as she would normally. She has still managed to bring home 7 gold, 2 silver and 1 bronze medal and the Nepean Aquatic Swim Club Captains Female Swimmer Award” said Cassie Mobbs, Matilda’s Mum.
“Matilda was selected by the Club Captains to award her the Female Swimmer Award because she has shown above other athletes in the club, determination to push herself in training and in competition” added Jackie Barck, Matilda’s Coach at Nepean Aquatic Centre.
With lockdown restrictions limiting Matilda’s time in the pool, she has introduced a dryland strength program to her training. This has assisted in developing her balance and co-ordination skills.
“Although Matilda qualified to compete at this year’s National Age Championships, given her age and expected circumstances, we decided not to compete but have continued training through as best we can, given the lockdown restrictions and pool situation” explained Jackie.
Her focus is now on the National Age Championships in April 2022, where she will work hard to improve her times in training and to aim for selection in the NSW Paralympic Development Program.
“Improvements in her 400m freestyle time will come from endurance and continued work in her technique. Breaking her own record each time that she competes in that event will keep her on target,” said Jackie.
Matilda’s swimming idol and Australian Paralympic Athlete Ellie Cole also had a special message for her on television during the recent 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games.
“I was speechless and blown away. I couldn’t believe that Ellie remembered and mentioned me with everything she had going on. She really is the best! When I raced against her in the 400m freestyle early this year, she was so supportive and told me she would always be in my corner” ended Matilda.