26 LEN Member Federations will participate in the 12 events, to be staged in the temporary pool at the famous Nicola Pietrangeli Stadium.

Double Olympic bronze medallists Marta Fiedina will be one-to-watch in Rome – LEN / Simeone Castrovillari

WOMEN’S DUET AND SOLO: Look out for Austria’s Alexandri triplets

Whereas Belarus (one silver, two bronze), Hungary and Israel (one bronze each) appeared on the European medal table for the first time ever in 2021, Austria left an especially strong impression in the past years.

With two bronze medals in the duet competition, Anna-Maria and Eirini Alexandri successfully followed the footsteps of compatriots Alexandra Worisch, Eva-Maria Edinger and Nadine Brandl.

The now 56-year-old Worisch not only won Duet gold (together with Eva-Maria Edinger) at the 1985 European Championships in Sofia/BUL, but also had Solo silvers from 1981 (Split) and 1987 (Strasbourg). Worisch’s niece Nadine Brandl, now living in the US, was a top ten synchro swimmer during the first decade of 2000, too.

Anna-Maria Alexandri and Eirini Alexandri
Anna-Maria Alexandri and Eirini Alexandri (AUT) – Fina

Recently, thanks to their impressive performances, Anna-Maria and Eirini Alexandri have inspired not only the spectators but also the judges.

At the 2022 Worlds five weeks ago in Budapest, they confirmed their elevated status by clinching bronzes in the Duet free and technical routines.

The top favourites in the duet events are also twins, Marina and Vasalina Aleksiiva from Ukraine. They returned with two silver medals from the World Championships, where most probably for the first time in universal sport history, the podium was occupied by three twins: the Wang sisters from China won both titles, ahead of the Alekiivas and the Alexandris. Italy’s Linda Cerrutti and Costanza Ferro are definitely capable of claiming a medal, too.

Maryna & Vladislava Aleksiiva
Marina and Vasalina Aleksiiva will be strong medal favourites at Roma 2022 – LEN / Simeone Castrovillari

Anna-Maria and Eirini Alexandri’s triplet sister Vasiliki – who finished fifth in the Solo Free and Technical at the Worlds in Budapest – will also compete in Rome in both Solo events, where Ukrainian world silver medallist Marta Fiedina is undoubtedly the top favourite.

World bronze medallist Evangelia Platanioti from Greece and Italy’s Linda Cerruti (2-time World 4th) might be her strongest challengers.

MALE SOLO: a historic moment for the sport

Pau Ribes
Pau Ribes will be among those competing in the solo and mixed events – LEN / Simeone Castrovillari

Rome will be the site of the first-ever senior European men’s solo event.

Athletes from six nations entered and will make it into the books of history in this new event, headed by 18-year-old Fernando Diaz from Spain, who won the Super Final of the FINA Artistic Swimming World Series last May in Athens, Greece. Giorgio Minisini of Italy will also be a strong medal contender.

MIXED DUET: Word Champions Minisini/Ruggiero “on fire”

Minisini / Rugger
World champions Giorgio Minisini and Lucrezia Ruggiero will target European gold – LEN / Simeone Castrovillari

The Mixed Duet, which celebrated its première at the 2015 Worlds in Kazan, has quickly become an attractive addition to the schedule at European Championships as well. Since the European debut in London 2016, Russia has set the tone with Aleksandr Maltsev and his respective partners Mikhaela Kalancha, Maya Gurbanberdieva and Olesia Platonova.

In Rome, the Italian Mixed Duet will be the top favourite. Giorgio Minisini, who missed the last edition 2021 in Budapest due to a last-minute positive Covid-test, is seeking his first European title – with two golds from the Worlds already under his belt alongside Lucrezia Ruggiero.

The strongest challengers might be the Catalan duo Pau Ribes and Emma Garcia and the Slovakian siblings Silvia and Jozef Solymosy.

TEAM EVENTS: Ukraine on top – possible podium finishes for Italy and Greece?

Team Ukraine competes at Worls Artistic Swimming Women’s Team free finals – Fina

The team events also offer a good opportunity for some nations to step on to the podium for the first time.

Ukraine will go all-in, they have entered both team events as well as the Combination and Highlight – which offers them a good opportunity to further improve their medal tally with additional golds.

For the first time in years, Spain skips the team events as well as the women’s solo and duet, leaving Italy and Greece a fine chance to fill the spots on the podium.