This means war: Katinka Hosszú and other swimmers risk being banned
FINA warned Katinka Hosszú and other world-class swimmers not to take part in the International Swimming League (ISL) set to be launched in Turin on the 20th of December. If they do, they can expect to be banned for 2 years, but they cannot compete at the World Cup in 2019 for sure.
As 24.hu wrote, ISL is a new association founded by swimmers but is not recognised by FINA. Katinka has already had a confrontation once with the International Swimming Federation in 2017 when they maximised the number of events one can take part to four/person/stage at the world cup. She won that time, as this rule has been erased by FINA due to the outrage on Katinka and many other swimmers’ part in February this year.
As we wrote earlier, Hosszú made a proposal that it would be worth it for the best swimmers
to team up and create their own federation and competition with their own rights.
She told other swimmers about this at the 2017 World Aquatics Championships in Budapest, where she suggested building the whole system as tennis players did with WTA and ATP tours.
This matches the article of Insidethegames, which mentions that the idea of ISL has come up earlier.
FINA warned their 209 member states not to cooperate with the new federation or the organisers of the events if they do not want to get sanctions in return.
There is a real twist in the story: Paulo Barelli, president of the Italian and European Swimming Federation, member of the board of FINA, who aspired to be the chairman of the federation but failed in the end, ignored all threats, stating he is the head of the organising committee behind the ISL competition to take place on December 20th. He said the invitational competition is not against the rules of the European and International Swimming Federation.