Sam Short (swimming) etched his name alongside swimming greats when he won gold in the 1500m freestyle at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games. He also won silver in the 400m as part of an Australian trifecta with Elijah Winnington and Mack Horton. However, the Queenslander nearly didn’t make the team after a miscalculation in the number of laps in the 1500m freestyle at the selection trials. With 100 metres to go, he touched the wall thinking the race was done. Short swam on and won the race outside the qualification mark, then had a nervous wait before selectors gave him a reprieve.
Just five weeks before competing in Birmingham, Sam was diagnosed with a melanoma on his lower back and underwent surgery in Budapest following the world championships.
Sam is also an accomplished Australian surf champion, winning the 2021 under-19 Australian Surf race championship and open and under-19 surf teams titles – following in the footsteps of his father Danny Short and uncle Stephen Short – both great champions with the Maroochydore club.
Coached by Damien Jones at the Rackley Centenary Swim Club in Brisbane, the former Prince of Peace Lutheran College school captain started university in 2022 studying science and law. He is also an ambassador for the Melanoma Institute Australia.
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