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Malawi finishes 9th with 13 medals

TOP PERFORMER—Gomes

Malawi’s athletes finished the Cana Zone IV Swimming Championships in Gaborone, Botswana, with 13 medals on Sunday.

Interestingly, the 13 medals were won by just two swimmers out of the 14 who competed for the country.

Filipe Gomes proved to be Malawi’s best swimmer when he hauled seven medals over four days while Sharon Melrose also shone for the country in the Masters category where she lifted six medals.

Gomes was undoubtedly in a class of his own as he won three gold, two silver and two bronze whereas Melrose collected two gold, one silver and three bronze.

At the end of the competition, Malawi ranked on position nine out of 13 countries with Zimbabwe topping the medals table after collecting 34 gold.

Namibia came second with 28 gold, followed by hosts Botswana who amassed 11 gold. eSwatini finished bottom of the table with four silver and four bronze.

In the Masters category, Malawi finished on fifth position while Botswana topped the table with 30 gold.

Zambia made it to second position after collecting 13 gold whereas Namibia finished third with four gold.

Malawi Team Manager, Beatrice Makwenda, said despite failing to win medals, several other athletes that represented the country set new national records.

“Jeremiah Makwenda set up records in the 50 metres freestyle and the 100 metres backstroke. He has broken Tom Donker’s records set in 2008. Gomes has also broken a record in 2009.

“One of our female swimmers, Amara Pinto, has also done well in the 800 metres freestyle and has broken Kaitlin Harthoom’s 2011 record. Such improvements give us hope for better performances in the near future,” Makwenda said.

She said Gomes had missed automatic Olympic Games qualification by two seconds and stands a second chance at another tournament scheduled for June.

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