HARARE-HARARE defended their title at the 2020 National Junior Swimming championships held over the weekend at Chisipite Senior School.
The hosts came out tops in most of the events to underline their dominance in the juniors as they finished with a combined team score of 1 171.
On second position was Matabeleland Junior team with 596 points. Some of the leading swimmers for Harare were captains Mikayla Makwabarara and Kyle Heyns as well as Limbikani Kalipengule.
Makwabarara, competing in the girls’ juniors for the last time, picked up five medals including four gold and one silver. She said as captain she had to lead by example.
“It was a lot of fun and it was my last year, so I was just trying to have as much fun as I could. I feel like everyone really tried their best.
“It was really tough and there was a lot of competition. But there were other people motivating me and my parents. Seeing the younger people doing so well, I knew that I also had to maintain a good standard.
“I think I did really well because I did as good as I expected myself to. It was my goal, so I am really proud of myself,” said Makwabarara.
Heyns said they had worked hard as a team to defend the title.
“This year’s junior championships has gone really well and our swimmers have pushed really hard. It was really good, it was tough though. I think we did really well, they have pushed through and we did really well,” said Heyns. Although they came fourth, Masvingo’s Yorina Mugadhi was also outstanding as she got two gold medals in the 11-year-olds 50m butterfly and 50m freestyle and two silvers in the 11-year-olds 50m backstroke and 100m individual medley.
“It’s been quite a success for me. I am feeling very proud of myself and I have realised that hard work really pay.
“Mostly I had faith in myself because I realised that there is no point in being scared of going in the pool and that if you have done the work then you can achieve anything,” Mugadhi said.
Mashonaland Country Districts Juniors accumulated 377 points to finish third and Masvingo were fourth with 114 points. In fifth place was Manicaland with 100 points. The competition attracted over 200 swimmers. Herald