World Champion Matt Richards Nominated For UK Sport Award

Matt Richards Nominated for UK Sport Award After Historic Year as Two-Time World Champion

Matt Richards has been nominated for honors at UK Sport’s PLx Awards 2023 following an outstanding year in which he secured double gold at the World Championships.

The 20-year-old, who is coached by Ryan Livingstone at Millfield in south-west England, foreshadowed his incredible success at the British Championships in April, where he became the first man to hit the 21/47.1:44 freestyle triple, achieving impressive times of 21.98 in the 50, 47.72 in the 100, and 1:44.83 over 200.

At the Fukuoka world championships, he triumphed in the 200 free, leading home Olympic champion Tom Dean for a historic British one-two, before joining forces with Duncan Scott and James Guy to secure the 4×200 world crown, adding to their Olympic title.

Matt Richards

Matt Richards: Photo Courtesy: Morgan Harlow/British Swimming

He also led off the British 4×100 mixed free quartet in 47.83 as they claimed bronze in a European record of 3:21.68.

Richards has the opportunity to expand his silverware at next month’s European Short-Course Swimming Championships in Otopeni, Romania.

He is set to compete in the 50, 100, and 200 free, with notable competitors such as David Popovici, Maxime Grousset, and Florent Manaudou also participating, alongside British teammates Dean, Scott, Guy, and Ben Proud.

His remarkable achievements have led to his nomination for the Athlete Award alongside Joe Clarke, who clinched two titles at the 2023 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships, and Matt Weston, who secured the world skeleton crown during a golden World Cup campaign.

The PLx Awards, organized by UK Sport and supported by The National Lottery, celebrates exceptional individuals, teams, and high-performance projects in the Olympic and Paralympic community. The awards ceremony is set to take place in Stratford-upon-Avon on 28 November.

Reflecting on his achievements in 2023 so far, Richards shared with Swimming World:

“It was a great year. The past season for me and the team was about building back to where we wanted to be.

“The previous year was quite a tough one for me; it wasn’t where I wanted to be after the success of Tokyo and so all of last season for us was about getting myself back on the trajectory that I wanted to be on heading into Paris.”


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