Picture: David Kiberd

Tallaght’s Brendan Hyland was one of the stars of the Irish Open swimming championships at the National Aquatic Centre with double gold, winning the 100m and 200m butterfly golds.

Indeed, along with Jordan Sloan, he added his names to the growing list of swimmers with consideration times for the European Championships, joining Darragh Greene, Shane Ryan, Mona McSharry and Conor Ferguson for the August event.

Hyland was the star of the show when he cracked the 1.58 mark in the 200m Butterfly Final. Hyland broke his own record of 1:58.08 by over half a second in 1:57.44 and won his sixth consecutive 200m Butterfly title.

The delighted 23-year-old commented: “Usually, I’m quite excited by something like this but today I’m just so relieved, I’m always really nervous. I said to my coach if I could get down to 1.57 low for this season it would be a success, we’re there now so I’ll keep pushing on.”

On the final day of the competition, he was once again the star. The 22-year-old smashed his own 100m Butterfly Irish record, taking .64 off the 2017 standard (53.26), dipping below 53 seconds for the first time in 52.62 to win the Irish title for the seventh consecutive year.

Also, in record breaking form was Ellen Walshe who set a new junior record in the 100m Butterfly. Walshe, of Templeogue SC broke Emma Reid’s 2016 record by two tenths of a second in 1:00.69.

Rory McEvoy concluded his week with a four second best to take the Men’s 200m Backstroke Title in 2:01.01. The NCD and Ennis swimmer had won gold in the 50m and silver in the 100m Backstroke earlier in the week.

Templeogue’s Sean McNicholl twice broke the boy’s record in the 50m butterfly, clocking 24.86 in the heats and then 24.71 in the final for the silver medal. NAC SC’s Brian O’Sullivan won the national title in the event in 24.69

Speaking at the conclusion of the Irish Open where 11 new Irish records were set, Swim Ireland National Performance Director Jon Rudd commented: “I am delighted to say that we have had well over 40 performances from our athletes that are inside our tough consideration standards for the European Championships, the World Youth Olympic Games and the European Junior Championships.

“We provided our athletes and our coaches with a new and pressurised ask – that of a sole trials operating at the same time at opposite sides of the world.

“To be on an Irish team this summer, you must be able to stand up on day that counts.”

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