Swimming: Sergio Lopez set to take over as Singapore head coach

Joseph Schooling (right) celebrating his silver-medal achievement in the 100m butterfly event with his coach Sergio Lopez at the Tollcross International Swimming Centre on July 28, 2014. Mr Lopez is set to take over as head coach of the national swim
Joseph Schooling (right) celebrating his silver-medal achievement in the 100m butterfly event with his coach Sergio Lopez at the Tollcross International Swimming Centre on July 28, 2014. Mr Lopez is set to take over as head coach of the national swimming team. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

Spaniard Sergio Lopez is set to take over as head coach of the national swimming team, stepping down from his role as head coach of the Bolles School team in Jacksonville, Florida.

It is understood that the 1988 Seoul Olympics bronze medallist has personally met with swimmers and parents at Bolles to inform them of his decision to leave for the Republic.

Lopez, 45, replaces Briton Ian Turner, who resigned in July due to health issues. The Spaniard is no stranger to Singapore swimming, having coached Joseph Schooling while the 19-year-old was based at the Bolles School before recently graduating to join the University of Texas. Lopez has also been part of Singapore's coaching set-up at several major Games.

Under his tutelage, Schooling took gold in the 100m butterfly at the Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea - the Republic's first men's swimming gold at that stage in 32 years. He also won a silver at the Commonwealth Games in July, coming in second behind Olympic gold medallist Chad le Clos in the men's 100m butterfly. It was Singapore's first ever swimming medal at the Games.