SI National Swimming team focus on Pacific Games 2019

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BY ROMULUS HUTA

SOLOMON Islands Swimming National team has set a strong focus toward their participation at next year’s Pacific Games in Samoa.

Swimming Head coach Stance Beula said their aim is to make Solomon Islands reach new heights in swimming by winning the country’s first medal in the newly-introduced sport.

Swimming is one of the 16 compulsory codes within the allocated 24 sports earmarked to be staged during the Games which will run from July 8 to 20 in Apia next year.

The Solomon Islands swimming team participated in last month’s 12th edition of the Oceania Swimming Championship in PNG and have achieved a fair result despite most of its members missing out on a place in the finals of their various events.

“The championship last month was important for us.

“I think we have the potential to make it further given we have no proper facilities at home to enhance our training,” Beula told SunSPORTS upon their return from Port Moresby.

“Here we train in open waters which hold a lot of difference from the pool we compete in at the Oceania level.

“The level at the Oceania Championship is a lot higher given it is dominated by the experienced Australian and New Zealand swimmers who are very much well-off and equipped.

“Upon our return, our next target is the Pacific Games next year in Samoa.

“We will resume training shortly for the Samoa Games and so as we will also be looking to send some of our swimmers to an overseas event coming up this year,” Beula said.

Swimming Federation Vice-President Nihal Seneviratne said results gathered from the Oceania Championship last month renews the call that more support is needed from stakeholders for swimming.

“Firstly, we have no proper facilities back home but still we were able to produce some excellent results in the heats.

“Our performance tells us that we have a lot of potential in swimming and this is only the start,” Seneviratne assures.

Members of the national swimming team infront of the Taurama Aquatic Center in Port Moresby during last month’s Oceania Championship.(insert) The national swimming head coach Stance Beula, Swimming Vice-President Nihal Seneviratne and PNG swimming legend Ryan Pini.
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