2012 Australian Paralympic Team portrait of Watt
|Born||1 October 1987 (age 26)
Newcastle, New South Wales
|Height||1.68 m (5 ft 6 in)|
Prudence Elise Watt was born on 1 October 1987 in Newcastle, New South Wales. She was born premature at 24 weeks and the high levels of oxygen in her system resulted in her retina being damaged. As a result, she can see about 2 meters ahead and has a limited amount of peripheral vision. Her vision impairment is labelled retinopathy of prematurity. In 2011, she was studying a Bachelor of Science at Monash University.
She began swimming at thirteen and at the age of fifteen, she first represented Australia internationally at the 2002 IPC Swimming World Championships, in Mar Del Plata, Argentina, where she won two bronze medals. She became interested in swimming through surf life saving and was competing at state and national levels at the age of fourteen. In 2001, she was selected to tour Canada with the NSW Disabled Ski Team. This selection forced her to focus on swimming for her sporting career. She was an Australian Institute of Sport paralympic swimming scholarship holder from 2002 to 2011. She is currently a Victorian Institute of Sport scholarship holder.
She won five silver medals, and one bronze at the 2004 Athens Games, after competing in the Women's 100 m Butterfly S13 event, the Women's 100 m Freestyle S13 event, the Women's 200 m Individual Medley SM13 event, the Women's 400 m Freestyle S13 event and the Women's 50 m Freestyle S13 event. At the same games, she won a bronze medal in the Women's 100 m Breaststroke SB13 event. She competed at the 2008 Beijing Games but failed to win a medal.
At the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne she swam a personal best in the Elite Athletes with a Disability (EAD) 100m freestyle. At the 2006 IPC Swimming World Championships in Eindhoven, Netherlands, she won a silver medal in the Women's 100m Butterfly S13. At the 2011 Para Pan Pacific Championships, she won four medals with gold in the Women's 100m Butterfly and 100m Breaststroke and two bronze medals for the 50m and 100m Freestyle SB13 events.
At the 2012 London Games, she won a gold medal in the Women's 100 m Breaststroke SB13 after being the fastest qualifier for the event, and a bronze medal in the Women's 50 m Freestyle SB13. She also participated in the S13 class of the Women's 100 m Freestyle and 200 m Individual Medley.
Watt was the 2004 Australian Paralympic Committee Junior Female Athlete of the Year, and the 2006 and 2007 Telstra Swimmer of the Year with a Disability. She was awarded an Order of Australia Medal in the 2014 Australia Day Honours "for service to sport as a Gold Medallist at the London 2012 Paralympic Games."
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- "Australia Day honours list 2014: in full". Daily Telegraph. 26 January 2014. Retrieved 26 January 2014.
- "Prue Watt Profile". Telstra Paralympic Education Program Website. Retrieved 13 March 2012.
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- Healey, Melida (3 November 2004). "Junior athlete title for Prue". Guardian News. Retrieved 13 March 2012.