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Sport Swimming
NOC Australia   
Born14 Sep 1987 in Brisbane, AUS
Height1.76 m
Weight 69 kg
 Human Interest 
Further Personal Information
Husband Steve
Other names
Alicia Hardy
Canberra, ACT, AUS
Sport Specific Information
When and where did you begin this sport?
She began swimming at age two.
Why this sport?
She wanted to swim in her neighbour's pool.
General Interest
Couttsie (swimming.org.au, 16 Jun 2010)
Shopping, going to the movies. (swimming.org.au, 2014)
Hero / Idol
Australian swimmer Susie O'Neill. (swimming.org.au, 16 Jun 2010)
She suffered a serious shoulder injury in late 2014. (olympictalk.nbcsports.com, 10 Apr 2015)

She suffered a hand injury in October 2014 but continued to train and compete despite being hampered by the problem. (smh.com.au, 13 Oct 2014)

Bowel problems required surgery in 2007 and again in 2009, causing her to miss the world championships that year. (aliciacoutts.com.au, 2010)

Glandular fever prevented her from competing at the 2006 Commonwealth Games selection trials. (NOC, 14 Jul 2008)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Success isn't final, failure isn't fatal, it's courage that counts." (swimming.org.au, 16 Jun 2010)
Awards and honours
She was inducted into the Australian Path of Champions in 2014. The Path of Champions recognises the achievements of Australia's top athletes. (swimswam.com, 21 Oct 2014)

She was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia [OAM] in the 2014 Australia Day Honours list. Her fellow 4x100m gold medallists from the 2012 Olympic Games in London also received the honour. (insidethegames.biz, 26 Jan 2014)

She was named the 2012 Australian Institute of Sport Athlete of the Year [shared with sailor Tom Slingsby]. (swimming.org.au, 17 Nov 2012)

She was named the 2010 and 2012 Australia Swimmer of the Year. (Swimming Australia, 24 Nov 2012; aliciacoutts.com.au, 17 Nov 2011)

She was named 2008 Australian Institute of Sport Female Swimmer of the Year. (ausport.gov.au, 18 Jul 2012)
Other information
She retired from competitive swimming in October 2016. "From a little girl who had a dream to be an elite swimmer, to my final race in Rio [2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro] I wouldn't change a thing about my career and I am so proud of everything my team and I managed to achieve over the years." A week after her retirement she announced that she was pregnant with her first child, due in May 2017. (Instagram profile, 10 Nov 2016; swimswam.com, 31 Oct 2016)

She claimed five medals at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, joining Ian Thorpe and Shane Gould with the most medals won by an Australian at a single edition of the Olympic Games. (theaustralian.com.au, 05 Aug 2012)

Her father Gary died from non-Hodgkin's lymphoma when she was seven years old, after a seven year battle with the disease. Her family sometimes struggled financially during his illness and swim coach Dave Urquhart trained Alicia for over a decade for free, developing her into an elite swimmer. "He became a surrogate father [to her]," said Alicia's mother Julie. When Alicia was five her father told her "you'll go to an Olympics one day" and she says she has swum for him ever since, realising his belief in 2008 when she competed at the Olympic Games in Beijing. (heraldsun.com.au, 24 Jul 2011)

In July 2007 she had major abdominal surgery for an interception of the bowel [doctors removed 15cm of her bowel and in the process found a benign tumour] which put her out of the pool for several months. Following the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, she says she returned to training too soon and exacerbated the problem, requiring abdominal surgery again in March 2009. Following the first surgery in 2007 she struggled to return to her optimal competitive weight, which took a mental toll. "It was just a daily battle. I'd come home and I'd just cry because I'd be like 'why am I doing this?'" (swimming.org.au, 16 Jun 2010; heraldsun.com.au, 24 Jul 2011)

 Competition Highlights
Olympic Games
Rank Year Venue Event Result
5 2016 Rio de Janeiro, BRA 200m Individual Medley 2:10.88
2 2012 London, ENG 200m Individual Medley 2:08.15 
1 2012 London, ENG 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay 3:33.15
2 2012 London, ENG 4 x 100m Medley Relay 3:54.02
3 2012 London, ENG 100m Butterfly 56.94
2 2012 London, ENG 4 x 200m Freestyle Relay 7:44.41
5 2008 Beijing, CHN 200m Individual Medley 2:11.43
World Championships
Rank Year Venue Event Result
2 2013 Barcelona, ESP 200m Individual Medley 2:09.39
2 2013 Barcelona, ESP 100m Butterfly 56.97
Heats 2013 Barcelona, ESP 50m Butterfly 26.56
2 2013 Barcelona, ESP 4 x 200m Freestyle Relay 7:47.08
2 2013 Barcelona, ESP 4 x 100m Medley Relay 3:55.22
2 2013 Barcelona, ESP 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay 3:32.43
2 2011 Shanghai, CHN 200m Individual Medley 2:09.00
2 2011 Shanghai, CHN 100m Butterfly 56.94
6 2011 Shanghai, CHN 100m Freestyle 53.81
5 2011 Shanghai, CHN 4 x 100m Freestyle Relay 3:36.75
3 2011 Shanghai, CHN 4 x 100m Medley Relay 3:57.13
World Cup Short Course
Rank Year Venue Event Result
7 2013   Overall  
1 2013 Beijing, CHN 100m Individual Medley 58.08
7 2013 Beijing, CHN 50m Butterfly 26.51
1 2013 Beijing, CHN 100m Butterfly 56.00
2 2013 Beijing, CHN 200m Individual Medley 2:06.23
1 2013 Beijing, CHN 4 x 50m Medley Relay 1:38.23
2 2013 Singapore, SGP 100m Individual Medley 58.32
6 2013 Singapore, SGP 50m Butterfly 26.84
2 2013 Singapore, SGP 100m Butterfly 56.67
3 2013 Singapore, SGP 200m Individual Medley 2:07.32
1 2013 Singapore, SGP 4 x 50m Medley Relay 1:38.02
6 2013 Singapore, SGP 4 x 50m Freestyle Relay 1:36.46
2 2013 Tokyo, JPN 200m Individual Medley 2:05.63
7 2013 Tokyo, JPN 50m Butterfly 26.32
1 2013 Tokyo, JPN 100m Individual Medley 57.53
1 2013 Tokyo, JPN 100m Butterfly 55.30
1 2013 Tokyo, JPN 4 x 50m Medley Relay 1:37.84
2 2008 Sydney, NSW, AUS 100m Individual Medley 1:01.00
3 2004/2005 Daejeon, KOR 100m Individual Medley 1:02.75
3 2004/2005 Melbourne, VIC, AUS 100m Individual Medley 1:01.90