American artistic swimmer Anita Alvarez had to be saved by her coach Andrea Fuentes from drowning while performing at the World Championships in Budapest.
The American lost consciousness in the pool during her routine and sunk towards the bottom.
Fuentes, a four-time Olympic medallist in synchronised swimming from Spain, jumped into the pool after she saw Alvarez barelling towards the bottom at the end of her solo free final routine.
Alvarez was then tended to by medical professionals beside the pool before being taken away on a strecther for fruther treatment.
It is the second time that she, as a coach, has had to resucue alvarez from drowning, having done so once already before the World Championships. She had leapt into the pool during an Olympic qualification event last year and pulled Alvarez to safety along with the American’s swim partner Lindi Schroeder.
“Anita is much better, she is already at her best. It was a good scare, to be honest,” Fuentes told Spanish newspaper Marca.
“I jumped into the water again because I saw that no one, no lifeguard, was jumping in. I got a little scared because she wasn’t breathing, but now she’s fine. She has to rest”.
In a statement on the U.S. Artistic Swimming Instagram page, Fuentes said 25-year-old Alvarez would be assessed by doctors on Thursday before a decision was made on her participation in Friday’s team event.
The World Champioships are being organized by FINA and are being monitered with a fine-toothed comb after it became the first glolbal sports body to ban the participation of transgender atheltes from its events.