Sydney (AFP)

Australian swimming prospect Kaylee McKeown broke the world record in the 200m short course backstroke with a time of 1.58s94 at the Australian National Championships, the Australian Federation announced on Saturday.

The 19-year-old swimmer thus beats the mark established in 2014 by the Hungarian Katinka Hosszu (1 min 59 sec 23).

“We don't get to short course too often so I was excited to see what I could do after a solid training this year,” said McKeown, who struggled to realize that she had broken the record.

"I walked over to my teammates and my coach and they said: + You just broke a world record +, and I said to myself: + What? + I only realized a few minutes later".

The Australian Short Course Swimming Championships are taking place this year in a never-before-seen format due to Covid-19, with competitors swimming at the same time in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Hobart.

The races started on Thursday.

McKeown's record was set on Friday evening, but Swimming Australia did not release it until Saturday morning.

McKeown is one of the top hopes for the Australian Olympic team heading to Tokyo next year, as they won silver in the 200-meter backstroke at the world long-course championships last year. in South Korea.

© 2020 AFP