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Benjamin PROUD
Sport Swimming
NOC Great Britain   
GenderMen
Born21 Sep 1994 in London, ENG
Height1.89 m
 Human Interest 
Further Personal Information
Residence
Plymouth, ENG
Occupation
Athlete
Languages
English
Higher education
Sport Studies - University of St. Mark and St. John: Plymouth, ENG
Sport Specific Information
When and where did you begin this sport?
He began learning to swim at age one and began training seriously at age 17.
Why this sport?
"Being raised in Malaysia, living there the first 16-17 years of my life, it's a tropical country so we spent a lot of time in the water. I was on a school team but never took it seriously. Another friend and I joined a team - it was just us two and our coach - but after one of the first practices the coach turned to my mother and said he could make me Malaysian national champion within a year. In 10 months, my 50m freestyle time went from 25.0 to 23.4 and that was the turning point. I knew I had to go all in or nothing with swimming. I told my mother this is the career path I wanted to follow."
Club / Team
Energy Standard Swim Club [TUR] / Bath University [ENG]:
Name of coach
James Gibson [Energy Standard]; Mark Skimming [Bath], GBR
International Debut
Year
2013
Competing for
Great Britain
General Interest
Nicknames
Ben (Facebook profile, 11 Apr 2018)
Most influential person in career
Coach Jon Rudd, and his first coach Francis Kiu. (swimswam.com, 01 Sep 2018; plymouthherald.co.uk, 29 Nov 2016)
Injuries
He was troubled by several injuries in 2015. (swimswam.com, 22 Mar 2016)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Work hard in silence, let success be your noise." (Instagram profile, 20 Nov 2021)
Awards and honours
In 2018 he was named Devon and Cornwall's Sports Personality of the Year in England. (Twitter profile, 29 Jan 2019)
Ambitions
To compete at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, England. (sportsmole.co.uk, 01 Mar 2018; standard.co.uk, 01 Aug 2018; airasia.com, 25 Feb 2017)
Other information
ATTITUDE SHIFT
He said his attitude to swimming changed after winning a world title in the 50m butterfly in 2017, and that he felt better prepared to win an Olympic medal than he did in 2016. He finished fourth in the 50m freestyle at the 2016 Games Rio de Janeiro. "I still feel I'm in my infancy. My initial drive was to win that [world] title and the whole reason I swum. So, my drive has changed and it's not about fast times or winning medals but being the best I can be. I don't think I was ready for a medal in Rio [in 2016], but the result spurred me on to improve." (standard.co.uk, 01 Aug 2018)

COMMONWEALTH DISQUALIFICATION
At the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, QLD, Australia, he was disqualified following his 50m butterfly heat for movement on the starting blocks. He appealed the decision but the disqualification was upheld. "Unfortunately before the start signal I was judged to have moved my leg and the referee deemed this enough for a disqualification. I really wanted to come into the competition to retain both my titles [50m butterfly, 50m freestyle] and to have that opportunity taken away in the first heat is heart-breaking. There was so much invested in that and my world just shattered. It's the first time I have been disqualified at that level but better there than at the Olympics." (smh.com.au, 05 Apr 2018; standard.co.uk, 01 Aug 2018; bbc.co.uk, 05 Apr 2018)

TRAINING IN TURKEY
He moved to Turkey in February 2017 to train under coach James Gibson at the Energy Standard club, and spends most of the year there. "At the elite end of sport we're entering quite dangerous territory. To be number one or two in the world, you really have to be committed. It's the way sports are going now, it has to be 11-and-a-half months a year. The life of a swimmer can be draining but I'm driven to be the best swimmer I can be." (standard.co.uk, 01 Aug 2018)

SWITCHING FOCUS
He began his swimming career as a butterfly specialist. After finishing school and joining Plymouth Leander swimming club, he began to focus more on freestyle because the 50m butterfly is not an Olympic event. "Originally when I started swimming I was a 50m butterflyer - that was my event. That was the event I enjoyed the most and it was really the reason I got into swimming. But, since it's not an Olympic event, my focus switched to freestyle when I joined Plymouth [Leander]." (swimswam.com, 22 Mar 2016)

RAISED IN MALAYSIA
His family moved to Malaysia when he was five months old and he lived there until age 16. He competed for Alice Smith School, a British international school in Malaysia, under coach Francis Kiu. He hopes to return to Malaysia after his swimming career is over to train and work with local children. "Malaysia is my home, and forever will be." (swimswam.com, 01 Sep 2018; thesundaily.my, 10 Sep 2017; straitstimes.com, 26 Jul 2017)

 Competition Highlights
Olympic Games
Rank Year Venue Event Result
5 2021 Tokyo, JPN 50m Freestyle 21.72
Heats 2016 Rio de Janeiro, BRA 100m Freestyle 49.14
4 2016 Rio de Janeiro, BRA 50m Freestyle 21.68
World Championships
Rank Year Venue Event Result
7 2022 Budapest, HUN 50m Butterfly 23.08
1 2022 Budapest, HUN 50m Freestyle 21.32
7 2019 Gwangju, KOR 50m Butterfly 23.01
5 2019 Gwangju, KOR 50m Freestyle 21.55
5 2019 Gwangju, KOR 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay 3:11.81
1 2017 Budapest, HUN 50m Butterfly 22.75 
3 2017 Budapest, HUN 50m Freestyle 21.43
8 2015 Kazan, RUS 50m Butterfly 23.39
8 2015 Kazan, RUS 50m Freestyle 22.04
Heats 2015 Kazan, RUS 100m Freestyle 49.35
Heats 2015 Kazan, RUS 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay 3:15.70
4 2015 Kazan, RUS 4 x 100m Medley Relay 3:30.67
Semifinal 2013 Barcelona, ESP 50m Butterfly 23.33
Heats 2013 Barcelona, ESP 50m Freestyle 22.31
World Championships Short Course
Rank Year Venue Event Result
Heats 2021 Abu Dhabi, UAE 50m Butterfly  DNS
1 2021 Abu Dhabi, UAE 50m Freestyle 20.45
6 2021 Abu Dhabi, UAE 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay 3:10.19
8 2018 Hangzhou, CHN 50m Freestyle  DSQ
Heats 2014 Doha, QAT 50m Butterfly 23.21
Heats 2014 Doha, QAT 100m Freestyle 48.01
Semifinal 2014 Doha, QAT 50m Freestyle 21.44
5 2014 Doha, QAT 4 x 50m Medley Relay 1:32.30
5 2014 Doha, QAT 4 x 100m Medley Relay 3:22.78
European Championships
Rank Year Venue Event Result
2 2021 Budapest, HUN 50m Freestyle 21.69
1 2018 Glasgow, SCO 50m Freestyle 21.34
2 2018 Glasgow, SCO 50m Butterfly 22.78
3 2016 London, ENG 50m Freestyle 21.85
3 2016 London, ENG 50m Butterfly 23.34
Heats 2016 London, ENG 100m Freestyle 50.02
7 2016 London, ENG 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay 3:17.13
4 2014 Berlin, GER 50m Freestyle 21.94
3 2014 Berlin, GER 50m Butterfly 23.21
Semifinal 2014 Berlin, GER 100m Freestyle 49.33
1 2014 Berlin, GER 4 x 100m Medley Relay 3:31.73
European Championships Short Course
Rank Year Venue Event Result
3 2017 Copenhagen, DEN 50m Butterfly 22.44
2 2017 Copenhagen, DEN 50m Freestyle 20.66
World Cup
Rank Year Venue Event Result
57 2018   Overall Ranking  
2 2018 Budapest, HUN 50m Freestyle 20.89
5 2016 Beijing, CHN 100m Freestyle 48.21
2 2016 Beijing, CHN 50m Butterfly 22.77
2 2016 Beijing, CHN 50m Freestyle 21.33
4 2016 Berlin, GER 50m Butterfly 22.69
3 2016 Berlin, GER 50m Freestyle 21.15
6 2016 Doha, QAT 100m Freestyle 48.84
2 2016 Doha, QAT 50m Butterfly 22.57
2 2016 Doha, QAT 50m Freestyle 21.22
5 2016 Dubai, UAE 100m Freestyle 48.11
2 2016 Dubai, UAE 50m Butterfly 22.76
3 2016 Dubai, UAE 50m Freestyle 21.25
3 2016 Hong Kong, CHN 50m Butterfly 22.98
2 2016 Hong Kong, CHN 50m Freestyle 21.33
3 2016 Singapore, SGP 50m Butterfly 22.60
2 2016 Tokyo, JPN 50m Freestyle 21.25
6 2014 Singapore, SGP 100m Freestyle 48.55
5 2014 Singapore, SGP 50m Butterfly 23.19
6 2014 Singapore, SGP 50m Freestyle 21.81
8 2014 Tokyo, JPN 100m Freestyle 49.40
8 2014 Tokyo, JPN 50m Freestyle 22.04
7 2013 Moscow, RUS 50m Butterfly 23.51
8 2013 Moscow, RUS 50m Freestyle 21.96