Alessandra Ho is poised to make her Olympic debut at Tokyo 2020 ©PhotoCanberra

Artistic swimmer Alessandra Ho is set to make her Olympic debut next year after replacing Jane Fruzynski on Australia's team for Tokyo 2020.

Fruzynski was due to make her first appearance at an Olympic Games but announced her retirement from the sport last month at the age of 20.

Ho has been part of the national team since 2018, helping them earn Australia's qualification to Tokyo 2020 at the 2019 World Championships, and is now looking forward to realising her Olympic "dream" next summer.

"The Olympics has been a dream I've wanted for so long, it still hasn't sunk in that I'll be there," said the 20-year-old.

"In 2011 I saw a poster at our local pool for a come and try day. 

"I had a go and loved it straight away, that it was so creative and different to any other sport I'd tried.

"In 2012 the Olympic squad performed their routines at our nationals ahead of London 2012 - I remember watching them in awe and thinking 'I want to be like them one day'.

"And now I'm going to the Olympics.

"I told my family straight away, they're so proud and know all of the hard work I've put in to make it here.

"I want to do a swim that I'm proud of.

"We'll all be doing everything we can to be the best we can be over the next eight months and show the world how hard we've been working.

"We want to make our families and supporters proud in Tokyo."

It is the second time Australia has been forced to make changes to their eight-strong squad for Tokyo 2020 since it was confirmed in February.

Hannah Burkhill was added to the team in September after Rio 2016 Olympian Rose Stackpole announced her retirement from the sport in August. 

Ian Chesterman, Australia's Chef de Mission for Tokyo 2020, said the inclusion of Ho was a "moment to be celebrated".

Australia's artistic swimming team are gearing up for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics ©PhotoCanberra
Australia's artistic swimming team are gearing up for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics ©PhotoCanberra

"Congratulations to Alessandra on being named to make her Olympic debut," said Chesterman.

"I also want to thank Jane for her contribution to artistic swimming, as a competitor, teammate and supporter.

"It's never an easy decision to retire from elite sport, but is has now opened the door for Alessandra to make her Olympic debut and make the most of this opportunity.

"I'm sure Alessandra will do her teammates, family, supporters, coaches and the Australian Olympic team proud in Tokyo."

Fruzynski said it was a "very big decision" to retire but insisted she was "feeling very good" and congratulated Ho on her selection.

"Artistic swimming has given me so much, not only to travel and compete at the highest level and be around amazing teammates and coaches, but it helped me develop into the person I am today - my confidence, personality, and how I deal with challenges," said Fruzynski.

"I'm so thankful to have been a part of this squad.

"Massive congratulations to Alessandra, she absolutely deserves it.

"She's put in all the hard yards at trials, worlds, and helped us qualify the team and I'll be cheering her and the team on in July."

Team captain Emily Rogers added: "As difficult as it was to lose Jane as a teammate, I respect her decision and am happy that she has found her right path.

"I'm so excited to welcome Alessandra to the team and we are all ready to grow as a new team together."

Artistic Swimming, formerly known as synchronised swimming, made its Olympic debut in 1984 and is one of just two female events that has no male equivalent at the Olympics.

Australia finished last in both the team event and the women’s duet at Rio 2016.