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Mashonaland dominate national swimming championships

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Emerging star in the pool Samantha Welch yesterday led Mashonaland to glory in the national championships under way in Bulawayo.

Welch, an All-Africa Games medallist and a London 2012 Olympics Games hopeful, teamed up with Taryn Rennie, Cary Smith and Kim Bellringerin to win gold in the 17 and over category arriving home in 5.08:11.

Mashonaland dominated the championships winning gold medals in most of the categories.

They won the gold medal in the girls Under-12 400 metre medley finishing in a time of 6:10:73 followed by Matabeleland who completed the race in 6.21:86 and in third Mashonaland Country Districts in 7.09:77.

Mashonaland went on to win gold again in the boys Under-12 in a time of 5.52:09 in the same event.

Matabeleland came second with Ayaan Farah, Emily Hawgood, Natalie De Chassart and Victoria Van Breda in 5.50:74.

Matabeleland won their second gold in the relays through Frank Lang, Luke Isemonger, Andy Cyprianos and Corey Schultz in 4.30:37 in the boys Under-17 and over 400 metre relay.

Mashonaland were second in a time of 4.30:89 with Trevor Price, James Lawson, Lebo Ngwenya and Nicholas Burnett.

In the individual events Mary Hawgood won gold in 3.05:64 in the 200m breaststroke with Kim Bellringer second in 3.11:42.

In the boys’ category James Lawson was first in 2.34:92 followed by Kyle Mitchell also from Mashonaland in 2.54:09 while third place was Tinashe Manhamo from Midlands in 3.16:09.

In the girls Under-15 and Under-16 200m breaststroke Natasha Lawson who dominated in the age group came first in 3.04:98 with Misty Batchelor second in 3.11:42 and Laurie Stephens 3.14:92, all from Mashonaland.

The competition started on Thursday and ends today with five provinces taking part — Matabeleland, Mashonaland, Mashonaland Country Districts, Manicaland and Midlands.

Some of the country’s top junior swimmers are taking part in the competition and these include Samantha Welch of Mashonaland, Matthew Lawson, James Lawson, Natasha Lawson, Tarryn Rennie all from Mashonaland and Matabeleland’s Avalon Bruce, Andresious Cyprianos, Brendon Cyprianos, Luke Isemonger, Roan Isemonger and Tink Ashby.

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