An incident took place during the synchronized swimming discipline at the World Swimming Championships in the Hungarian capital Budapest on Wednesday. American Anita Alvarez lost consciousness after her exercise while still in the water. Her coach immediately sprang into action to rescue the hair from the bottom of the pool. “I had to jump, the rescuers didn’t,” it now sounds.
The incident occurred at the Margaret Island Swimming Complex during the solo segment of the synchronized swimming. 25-year-old Alvarez did her free solo practice but fell unconscious in the water immediately after her performance. Footage shows how she quickly sinks to the bottom of the pool. Her coach, Andrea Fuentes, jumped into action immediately and jumped into the pool. With the help of a second bystander, she was able to hold Alvarez to the surface and then bring him to safety.
Her coach, meanwhile, responded to the incident. “I was very scared. I immediately jumped into the water because the rescuers didn’t do it,” she told the Spanish sports newspaper MARCA. “They didn’t understand why I was yelling. I swam as fast as I could.” And with success. It is thanks to Fuentes’ quick response that the swimmer was quickly removed from the pool.
not first time
Half an hour after the incident, a caretaker announced that Alvarez is doing well. A relief for all involved, but also for the audience who held their breath during the whole event.
Alvarez’s fainting is said to be stress related and happened to her before. In 2021, for example, during a qualifying tournament for the Olympic Games. “Anita exhausted herself during her exercises,” her mother said at the time.
The World Swimming Championships will last until Saturday. It remains to be seen whether the American swimmer will still participate. “First rest and wait and see what the doctor says,” her entourage says.
Rescuers didn’t respond, so I acted like it was an Olympic final.
“It was a real shock,” said her Spanish coach Andrea Fuentes, who immediately jumped into the water to save her pupil. “I was afraid because I saw that she was not breathing, but now she is doing very well. She only had water in her lungs. Once she started breathing again, everything was fine.”
“It felt like a full hour. I yelled that something was wrong, I yelled to the rescuers to get in the water, but they didn’t catch what I was roaring or they didn’t understand. She stopped breathing. So I acted as fast as I could, like it was an Olympic final.”