Ellina Mhlanga Sports Reporter
THE National Senior Swimming Championships that were scheduled for next month have been indefinitely postponed due to the prevailing circumstances.
Harare are the hosts for the national meet that was scheduled for February 18 to 22 at Les Brown. But will have to wait a bit after the championships were postponed.
Zimbabwe swimming chairperson, l, yesterday confirmed the national competition has been pushed back.
Swimming was fortunate enough to get their season underway last year in September starting with Harare.
Their members had been holding their competitions under the strict Covid-19 guidelines after getting clearance from the Government through the Sports Commission.
After successfully hosting most of the events, they were now looking at completing the second half of the season before the Sports Commission recently suspended all sporting activities due to the recent rise of the coronavirus cases in the country.
Doorman said with the suspension of the sporting activities, swimmers will not have enough time to prepare for the nationals and new dates will depend on whether sport is allowed to resume at the end of January.
“Yes, senior nationals have had to be postponed basically due to the suspension of sporting activities and swimmers not having adequate preparation time. No date has been set as it all depends on what happens at the end of January review.
“It is frustrating for all concerned — swimmers, coaches and administrators — who have all geared themselves up for the released calendar both locally and further afield,” said Doorman.
Most of the swimmers had adjusted after a long break that limited the training schedules because most of the facilities clubs usually use were closed. It was one of the challenges most clubs had to deal with and some were forced to start their pre-season training a bit late.
After making some progress it may take time to regain the form and momentum the swimmers had picked.
Some of the swimmers have already attained qualification times for the South Africa Junior and Senior Championships.
Doorman said for the events in South Africa, they are waiting for confirmation from the hosts if they will be able to take part this year due to restricted numbers as the neighbouring country also took measures to curb the pandemic.
“In terms of those who have qualified for any events in South Africa we are waiting for confirmation from South Africa that we can attend those events. Numbers are severely restricted there at competitions. Again a potential frustration for all concerned.
“However, I believe we all need to think of the bigger picture in terms of Covid-19. This is serious and the health and well-being of our athletes, coaches, officials and their families must be paramount in all decisions in my opinion.
“This pandemic is a crisis for all and has and will affect many in many different ways,” said Doorman.
Harare, who are supposed to host the national championships, had named their provisional team of more than 100 swimmers following their provincial championships that were held between the end of November and early December last year.
The competition took place at Les Brown Pool in Harare, and was also used to assess their readiness for the nationals.