Schooling wants coach Reese with him in Rio
S'pore swim star wants decorated American coach with him at Olympics
For the last two years, University of Texas head swim coach Eddie Reese has undertaken the task of nurturing Joseph Schooling into a world-class butterfly sprint specialist.
If all goes well, the highly respected 74-year-old American will be by the Singaporean swim king's side in Rio de Janeiro, as the 21-year-old (above) looks to bring home an unprecedented Olympic swimming medal.
The Singapore Swimming Association (SSA) has submitted Reese's name to the Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC) for accreditation for the Games.
Reese was originally included in USA Swimming's roster of coaches for the Olympics earlier this year, but has since been omitted from the list.
The eight-time National Collegiate Athletic Association Coach of the Year confirmed the move to The New Paper last night.
University of Texas head swim coach Eddie Reese (right) may coach Joseph Schooling in Rio de Janeiro. PHOTO: TNP FILE PHOTO
"Yes it is true, the main reason is that I have been with Joseph for the last two years and they want me to continue with him for the Olympics," Reese told TNP in a phone interview from Texas.
SNOC secretary general Chris Chan said a request has been submitted to the Games organising committee to accredit Reese for Rio and the organisation is waiting for the reply.
Schooling said: "I'm excited to go to the Olympics with two of my coaches. This could not have turned out better.
"This is great for Singapore. Eddie is really experienced and having him on our side is phenomenal."
If Reese receives the green light, he will join outgoing national coach Sergio Lopez and technical director Sonya Porter on deck with the Singapore swimmers for the Olympics, which will be held in Rio from Aug 5 to 21.
Besides Schooling, siblings Quah Ting Wen and Zheng Wen are the other two swimmers who will represent Singapore in Brazil.
Schooling has made the Olympic "A" cut for the men's 100m and 200m butterfly events, and the 100m and 200m freestyle. He has been entered for all but the 200m freestyle for Rio.
Reese revealed that they will decide on Schooling's final Olympic schedule in "a few weeks".
Among Schooling's registered events, the 200m butterfly will be up first, with the heats and semi-finals on Aug 8 and the final 24 hours later, on National Day.
The 100m freestyle heats and semi-finals will be held on Aug 9, with the final to be held the next day.
The heats and semi-finals for the 100m butterfly - currently Schooling's strongest event - are on Aug 11, a day later.
There is a possibility that the Singaporean could drop the 200m butterfly in favour of the 100m freestyle, where he is said to be confident of winning a medal, as well.
He should then be warmed up sufficiently to tackle the likes of Michael Phelps, Chad le Clos and Laszlo Cseh in the 100m butterfly.
Schooling said: "I am leaning more towards the 100m free because it's less taxing than then 200m fly, and sets me up well for the 100m fly.
"I don't have to decide it now, but that's what I am preparing towards right now."