Schoolgirl Keanna MacInnes ‘over the moon’ at Games call

Keanna MacInnes (front row, first right) was part of the first batch of Scottish athletes announced for the Commonwealth Games next year. Pic: PA
Keanna MacInnes (front row, first right) was part of the first batch of Scottish athletes announced for the Commonwealth Games next year. Pic: PA
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Capital teenager Keanna MacInnes admits she is “over the moon” to have been selected as one of 21 swimmers who will represent Team Scotland at the Commonwealth Games in Australia.

The 16-year-old Heart of Midlothian athlete is one of six female swimmers who will be competing in the Gold Coast next April and she will be team mates with the like of Hannah Miley, who is off to her fourth Games, and Corrie Scott who takes part in her third Games.

It has been a dream 2017 for the Firhill High School S5 pupil to date.

Firstly she beat Olympian Miley in a 200m butterfly race back in July and then she picked up a bronze medal at the FINA World Junior Championships in the USA in August.

In that Indianapolis meet in the 200m butterfly she broke the Scottish junior record twice, posting 2:09.64 in the final to finish third for Great Britain.

And it is those results that have convinced the Team Scotland coaches she is good enough to take to the Games.

After the team was announced yesterday in Stirling, MacInnes said: “I knew that I had a chance of making it, but with so many quality older competitors around I knew it would be tough.

“So to hear that I was going to the Commonwealth Games was a bit of a shock, but once I calmed down I was over the moon as were my family and friends.

“Being so young and still at school it is quite hard to take in that I will be part of Team Scotland, but I have a few months to now get my head down and really train hard and get used to the idea.

“The great thing is that I already know quite a few of the other team members and the other girls who are more experienced like Hannah have always been very nice and have given me tips and pointers.”

MacInnes also believes the scale of the World Junior Championships a couple of months ago will help her ahead of the trip down under.

She explained: “There was a lot of pressure in America because I was representing Great Britain and I was up against a lot of quality swimmers who I had not come up against before.

“After my heat swim I felt very relaxed and felt that if I just stuck to the processes that had got me that far then I could medial.

“I managed to and I think it gave me confidence and has shown me how to prepare for meets and races as I get ready to head to the Gold Coast.”

Meanwhile, there will be plenty other swimmers at the Commonwealth Games with links to Edinburgh and the surrounding areas.

Eight University of Edinburgh swimmers are included in the shape of Euan Inglis, Kieran McGuckin, Mark Szaranek, Callum Tait, Jack Thorpe, Dan Wallace, Lucy Hope and Corrie Scott.

Craig McNally and Cassie Wild were brought up in the Capital while Craig Benson, Sean Campsie and Craig McLean are originally from Livingston.