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AMERICAN synchronised swimmer Anita Alvarez was saved by her heroic coach after FAINTING in the water at the World Championships on Wednesday.

Alvarez, 25, was competing in the final of the women's solo free event in Budapest when she came within seconds of death.

Heroic coach Andrea Fuentes saved US synchronised swimmer Anita Alvarez after she fainted in the poolCredit: AFP
Fuentes dived into the pool, swam to the bottom and hauled her to safetyCredit: AFP
Alvarez was eventually dragged to safety by coach Fuentes and an unnamed manCredit: AFP
Alvarez was dragged above the water as Fuentes aimed to wake her upCredit: Getty
Alvarez was eventually dragged out of the pool and given emergency medical careCredit: Reuters
Alvarez (left) was competing in the final of the women's solo free event at the World Championships in Budapest when she faintedCredit: Instagram @anitaalvarez
Alvarez has fainted in the pool during a competition before, at last year's Olympic qualifying event in BarcelonaCredit: Instagram @anitaalvarez

The US star was midway through her routine when she lost consciousness.

Alvarez began to sink to the bottom of the pool before her coach, Andrea Fuentes, saved her life.

Fuentes threw herself into the pool, swam to the floor, grabbed Alvarez and dragged her to safety with the help of another shocked onlooker.

The swimmer quickly regained consciousness and received immediate medical attention and is now on the mend.

The US team looked visibly petrified as they watched the terrifying sequence unfold and were seen consoling each other as medics raced to save Alvarez's life.

Incredibly, it's not the first time Fuentes has rescued Alvarez after the synchronised swimmer has fainted in the pool, having also done so in Barcelona last year.

After the shocking scenes in Budapest, Fuentes slammed lifeguards for "not doing anything".

Fuentes said: "It was a big scare. I had to jump in because the lifeguards weren't doing it.

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

"Anita is doing much better."

Fuentes later provided a further update on Instagram, writing: "What a day. I think I had all kind of possible emotions.

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

The heroic coach added: "We sometimes forget that this happens in other high-endurance sports.

"Marathon, cycling, cross country... we have all 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 to 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 decide with the doctor if she can swim free team finals or not."

Alvarez also passed out during an Olympics qualifying in Barcelona last year - with mum Karen revealing she had seen it happen before.

At the time, Karen claimed: "Unfortunately I've seen it happen to her before - never in competition, though.

"I knew right away. On their last element, I could tell something was up.

"It was hard to watch, definitely."