Before training could begin on Monday, head coach Neil Tait and his swimmers spent ten minutes at the poolside lauding the success of Daniel Wallace and Jak Scott at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. They are proud of them in Duns, and right so.
“It is great for the club,” said Neil. “People are talking about swimming on the street in Duns.”
Wallace and Scott are just two swimmers who have come through the ranks to make a name for themselves in the sport. Ben Higson is another Duns graduate playing his part in Glasgow. He is a member of the Scotland team’s coaching staff.
Add to that the success enjoyed by Euan Dale, who won silver at the 2006 Commonwealth Games and took part in the 2008 Olympics, and it is clear that there is something in the water at Duns.
According to Tait, who took over as head coach in January after eight years coaching in Eyemouth, the success can be attributed to one of his predecessors.
Joyce Waddell, who has now retired, attracted swimmers to Duns from far and wide when she was head coach. “She had a great connection with them,” said Neil, who swam alongside both Wallace and Scott when they were learning their trade.
“They were both very hard working, really dedicated. Competitive swimming is a big commitment, but Joyce always got them back.
“Jak travelled from Hawick five times a week and Daniel made a similar journey from North Berwick. It didn’t feel like a chore, and that was down to Joyce. She pushed them from an early age and she set the benchmark. She should be very proud.”