Fordham University swimmer qualifies for 2024 Summer Olympics

Fordham University swimmer Alex Shah has qualified for the 2024 Olympics, representing Nepal.

Greg Thompson and

News 12 Staff

Mar 13, 2024, 11:40 AM

Updated 23 days ago

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The Bronx will be represented in Paris this summer, as Fordham University swimmer Alex Shah has qualified for the 2024 Olympics, representing Nepal.
This will actually be Shah's second time going to the Olympics. He also competed in the Tokyo during the summer of 2021, which was right before his freshman year at Fordham.
"I actually wear my national cap under my Fordham cap," Shah says. "I feel like I'm representing both Fordham and Nepal simultaneously, so it's something that I'm very prideful about."
Despite that, and the fact that he has a tattoo of the Olympic logo, Shah tells News 12 that it wasn't until recently that he really started thinking about trying to qualify for the Paris games.
He says that he wanted to do more than just get back to the Olympics, but also do better than he did in Tokyo. He explained, "I'm a completely different swimmer than I am now in terms of how I approach the pool, and training. Day-to-day basics, like how I take care of myself."
Shah gives a lot of the credit for that to the new coach at Fordham this season, Tom Wilkens. Wilkens was the former captain of the US National Swim Team and Olympic bronze medalist in 2000.
"When you have practice, you kind of realize he's done those things more times than we could ever imagine," says Shah. "When he's talked to me about his personal experiences and mine, I feel like I can relate to that on just a great, personal level."
Experiences that Shah says are helping him prepare for almost every part of these games. From figuring out how to get the Olympic Village and pool without walking as much to keeping the entire experience in perspective.
Compared to 2021, Shah says, "I feel like it'll be less about necessarily being there, but also about trying to perform the best I can. I can get out of that pool knowing that I worked my hardest since Tokyo and I put in everything that I possibly could, and I feel like that's all that really mattered."
Shah will race in the 100 meter freestyle on July 30, and says he hopes to stay in the Bronx to train for as long as possible.


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