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US swimmer Anita Alvarez ‘was not breathing' when rescued by coach

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A member of Team USA (R) swims to recover USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals at the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships in Budapest. Photo: Photo by Oli Scarff / AFP) via Getty Images

A member of Team USA (R) swims to recover USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals at the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships in Budapest. Photo: Photo by Oli Scarff / AFP) via Getty Images

USA's Anita Alvarez is recovered from the bottom of the pool by a team member after an incident, during the women's solo free artistic swimming finals during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

USA's Anita Alvarez is recovered from the bottom of the pool by a team member after an incident, during the women's solo free artistic swimming finals during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

A member of Team USA (R) recovers USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals, during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

A member of Team USA (R) recovers USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals, during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

A member of Team USA (R) recovers USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals, during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

A member of Team USA (R) recovers USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals, during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

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A member of Team USA (R) swims to recover USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals at the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships in Budapest. Photo: Photo by Oli Scarff / AFP) via Getty Images

American artistic swimmer Anita Alvarez was "not breathing" when she was rescued from the bottom of the pool after fainting at the World Aquatics Championships.

The 25-year-old lost consciousness after completing her solo free final routine in Budapest on Wednesday.

Alvarez's coach Andrea Fuentes responded to the drama by diving in fully clothed to pull the swimmer to safety.

"It was a big scare," four-time Olympic medallist Fuentes was reported as saying by Spanish newspaper Marca.

"I was scared because I saw she was not breathing, but now she is doing very well.

"She only had water in her lungs, once she started breathing again everything was OK."

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A member of Team USA (R) recovers USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals, during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

A member of Team USA (R) recovers USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals, during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

A member of Team USA (R) recovers USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals, during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

And speaking to Spanish radio, she said: "It felt like a whole hour. I said things weren't right, I was shouting at the lifeguards to get into the water, but they didn't catch what I said or they didn't understand.

"She wasn't breathing. I went as quickly as I could, as if it were an Olympic final."

Alvarez was given medical attention poolside before being taken away on a stretcher.

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In a statement on the US Artistic Swimming Instagram page, Fuentes said Alvarez would be assessed by doctors on Thursday before a decision was made on her competing in Friday's team event.

Fuentes said: "Anita is OK - the doctors checked all vitals and everything is normal: heart rate, oxygen, sugar levels, blood pressure, etc... all is OK.

"We sometimes forget that this happens in other high-endurance sports.

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A member of Team USA (R) recovers USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals, during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

A member of Team USA (R) recovers USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals, during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

A member of Team USA (R) recovers USA's Anita Alvarez (L), from the bottom of the pool during an incident in the women's solo free artistic swimming finals, during the Budapest 2022 World Aquatics Championships at the Alfred Hajos Swimming Complex in Budapest on June 22, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

"Marathon, cycling, cross country... we all have seen images where some athletes don't make it to the finish line and others help them to get there.

"Our sport is no different than others, just in a pool, we push through limits and sometimes we find them.

"Anita feels good now and the doctors also say she is OK.

"Tomorrow she will rest all day and will decide with the doctor if she can swim free team finals or not. Thank you for all of your well wishes for Anita."

Alvarez, who finished seventh in the final, previously fainted following a routine during an Olympic qualifier in Barcelona last year.

Fuentes also rescued her on that occasion.


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