The Paris 2024 Olympics are near and the Australian team is starting to take shape.

In that team of 135 so far, two Greek Australians have been selected to make their Olympic debut. Charlie Negus in water polo and Zoe Poulis in artistic swimming.

With more than 45 international caps to his name before his 25th birthday, Charlie Negus is set to make his Olympic debut for the Aussie Sharks in Paris.

From a young age, it looked like Charlie Negus was destined to play water polo. With his brothers all playing the sport and his dad coaching, it was no surprise he developed his game quickly.

Greek from his mother’s side, Negus told Neos Kosmos his family got him started in the sport 12-13 years ago.

Charlie Negus. Photo: Supplied

“I remember watching a lot of water polo videos when we had family dinners at Papou and Yiayia’s house,” he said.

“That’s when I first realised it was my dream to go play on the biggest stage.”

The Sydney local captained Waverley College’s school water polo team whilst also representing Australia at junior national competitions.

He was called up to the national team, Aussie Sharks, in 2018 and competed in many international tournaments.

But the Olympics means he’s reached the top of the sport.

“Going to the Olympics is one of, if not, the biggest accomplishments. Words can’t explain what being able to represent my family and country at the highest level means to me.”

Negus’ coaching team also has a Greek, with Andrew Yanitsas heading to Paris to be assistant coach.

Yanitisas was a video analyst in the 2012 London Games and his wife Lea Yanitsas competed in the last two Games in water polo.

Zoe Poulis – The Greek Australian nereid swimming for the horizon

To 18-year-old Zoe Poulis, being named on the Australian Olympic Artistic Swimming Team means everything.

She has been training since she was seven-years-old, so that’s 11 years of year-round training, mainly in an outdoor pool.

When she was 16, she had to leave her family on the Gold Coast and move to Perth to be able to train with the Australian National Squad in the lead up to the Olympic Team selections.

Since then she has trained six days per week and travelled to numerous countries for international competitions gaining invaluable competition experience.

“To now be named in the Australian Olympic Artistic Swimming Team, means that it was all worth it,” she told Neos Kosmos.

“I have dreamt of this for so long and now it’s actually coming true, I can hardly believe it.”

Zoe Poulis during an Australian Artistic Swimming team announcement at the Tobruk Memorial Pool, Townsville, Friday, May 31, 2024. Photo: AAP/Scott Radford-Chisholm

Poulis’ parents and two brothers will be heading to Paris to support and cheer her on and after the Closing Ceremony, they’re all headed to Greece for a holiday.

“I am looking forward to visiting Olympia, the origin of the Olympic Games.”

“I’m so proud of representing Australia at these Games, but also of my Greek heritage. The Greek history of the Olympic Games makes me feel that little bit prouder and I can’t wait to be able to call myself an Olympian.”

While being a member of the national team, Poulis has also developed a sideline as a real-life mermaid, with more than 165,000 followers for her underwater flow videos on Instagram.

Charlie Negus (L) is set to make his Olympic debut for the Aussie Sharks in Paris. Photo: Sarah Negus/Facebook