Swimmers ready for the big splash


ALL SET: Contestants in the Girls A division getting ready for the start of an event at the Samarahan Sports Complex swimming pool in this July 2011 file photo.

KUCHING: The stage is all set for an exciting battle as 36 schools vie for top honours in this weekend’s 2nd Samarahan-Kuching Divisions Inter-School Swimming Championship at Samarahan Sports Complex swimming pool.

Back to defend their crowns in the primary and secondary sections are Chung Hua Primary School No. 5 and SMK Batu Lintang respectively.

SMK Batu Lintang will face some opposition from SMK Kuching High and Lodge School who are also fielding strong teams in the meet from June 30 to July 1.

Kota Samarahan Amateur Swimming Association (Kotas) president Yii Chee Sing said they were looking forward to a very competitive meet with entries that had already doubled the number at the inaugural championship last year.

“Thirty-six schools have confirmed participation which will make this the largest inter-school swimming meet ever to be held in Samarahan,” he said.

Yii said the community event was aimed at encouraging local youths to pursue an active lifestyle through swimming, to foster interaction between school children in the two divisions as well as to enhance Sarawak’s strength in the sport.

“The event is only into its second year but its remarkable progress would not have been possible without the generous support of the corporate sponsors,” he added.

Major corporate sponsors include Cahya Mata Sarawak, Instacom Engineering Sdn Bhd, Hock Seng Lee Berhad, Sarawak Energy Berhad, Naim Holdings Berhad, The Timber Land Group, KKB Engineering Berhad, Lee Ling Construction and Kimgres Marketing Sdn Bhd.

“We are also very grateful to Kotas special advisor Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah’s ongoing encouragement of Kotas’ growth and together with the input from our generous sponsors, we will be able to offer more opportunities for the children to take up swimming for life-long health benefits.

“Who knows, we may also unearth a future Olympians,” he said.

Yii said Sarawak’s traditional strength in aquatic sports had waned a little over the years and more competitions will help to inspire young swimmers to train harder.

“A lot of youngsters today are interested in sedentary pursuits such as the Internet, video and computer games while those who take up swimming tend to develop both a healthy body and mind,” he noted.

The inter-school meet will see swimmers compete in four age groups starting with ten years of age and below and up to 18 years of age.

Events will include the 200m individual medley, the four swimming stroke disciplines in 50m and 100m distances and the much-anticipated inter-school relays.

Several star state and Sukma-bound swimmers have confirmed to participate in the competition.

Apart from the overall champion for primary and secondary schools, trophies will also be awarded for the most outstanding girl and boy swimmers in each of the age divisions.

Enquiries on the event can be directed to Kotas by contacting the organising chairman Hii Tuang Sing at 019-8584066 or organising secretary Alice Kwon at 013-8183949.

The meet will be officially opened by Assistant Minister of Social Development (Youth Development) cum Assistant Minister of Housing Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah who has sponsored the perpetual trophies for the event.