Africa-Press – Rwanda. The Rwanda Swimming Federation (RSF) is in renewed efforts to unearth promising swimmers towards making swimming more competitive in Rwanda as well as increasing the number of athletes in the sport.
It is in that context that the federation has over the past month been touring different swimming clubs across the country to evaluate the state of the sport in an attempt to produce swimmers who can not only represent the country but also win medals at international swimming competitions.
The federation has so far visited five swimming clubs operating both in Rubavu District and Kigali to evaluate the level of swimmers as well as do advocacy for districts to support the clubs in their daily technical aspects.
“Through this new initiative, the federation is working with different clubs across the country to motivate swimmers and make sure they train hard to improve their performances on a regular basis so we can count on them in future competitions,” the federation president, Pamela Girimbabazi said.
Mako Sharks Swimming club is one of the clubs that the federation visited last weekend. The club, located at Green Hills Academy, is home to over 120 swimmers from different levels of swimming including beginners, intermediated and advanced as well as competitive swimmers, some of whom are students at the school and a few more who joined as per their parents’ requests.
Eloi Maniraguha who is in Birmingham City representing Rwanda at the Commonwealth Games is one of the swimmers who rose to fame at the club.
Despite not impressing at the Commonwealth Games, club boss James Bazatsinda said his club is doing pretty well in terms of preparing swimmers for future competitions, both locally and internationally.
“We have able swimmers who are ready for competitions and we are glad the federation is keeping a close eye on our club’s swimmers because there are high chances that we can produce more swimmers ready to represent the country at international swimming competitions,” he said of his club which is celebrating five years of existence.
The club is now looking to expand its operations in the Eastern Province.
Grimbabazi said the current tour will also help the federation identify swimmers who will represent Rwanda at the forthcoming open water competitions.
The majority of swimmers in open water are often identified in clubs operating in Rubavu and Karongi which are normally home to lake Kivu but the federation is monitoring the possibility of looking for additional swimmers in Rwamagana and Gicumbi.
“We have so far identified some who are ready to compete in open water and we hope that the country will be represented during the great lakes open water competition scheduled in November,” she said.