The talented swimmers will kick off their competition in Kazan next week, after spending the past two months training at Thanyapura – the Official FINA Training Centre of Southeast Asia – as part of a one-year long scholarship, which prepares the swimmers for the Rio Olympics 2016.
Reigning from six countries across the world, including Nepal, the Maldives, Bangladesh, Rwanda, Sri Lanka and India, the swimmers will compete in a bounty of races at the FINA World Championships such as the 50m, 200m, 1500 freestyle, 100m breast stroke and 50m and 200m butterfly.
Head Coach Miguel Lopez, who coached five Olympians and three Paralympians to a successful swim career with 20 medals, said: “We are hoping to come back to Thanyapura from the FINA World Championships with at least eight National Records and one Olympic qualifying time. I am very excited for Kazan and this is a good test of how the FINA programme is going.”
The ten swimmers’ names are Aminath Shahidha, Sajen Shahidha (from the Maldives), Mahfizur Rahman Sagor (from Bangladesh), Shivani Singh, Sajan Prakash (from India), Eroi Maniraguha (from Rwanda), Kimiko Raheem (from Sri Lanka), Sofia Shah, Sirish Gurung (from Nepal) and Cheran de Silva.
Sofia Shah, who will be racing in the 50m and 200m freestyle, said: “My training has been going really well. I think I am going to be setting a few national records at the FINA World Championships in Kazan. I have been swimming some of my best times here. I don’t know what my limits are now.”
Thanyapura and FINA have awarded 18 scholarships to swimmers from around the region. They will train and live at Thanyapura, while preparing for the FINA World Championships and the 2016 Rio Olympics – for which they have got wild cards.
Thanyapura’s swimming facilities include a 50m Olympic competition pool, a 25m training and teaching pool, Omega Track start blocks, a Daktronics timing system and scoreboard, an underwater video analysis window, ozone filtration and sports science services.
The spectacular training centre of Southeast Asia, 23-hectare one-stop-shop mega venue is a regular training base for triathlon stars, such as two-time world champion Caroline Steffen, Ronnie Schildknecht, who was the only man to win the same elite triathlon event seven straight times, and Hall of Famer Belinda Granger.
They are lured to the acclaimed sporting Mecca because of the Olympic-standard facilities and world-class stable of coaches, sports scientists, sports psychologists, dieticians, physiotherapists and chiropractors – with everything underpinned by Thanyapura’s unique three-dimensional coaching model for the mind, body and soul.
FINA World Championships
The FINA World Championships are being held in the capital of Russia – Kazan. Hundreds of swimmers from across the globe will compete with the hopes of winning medals, setting Olympic times and beating world records. They are being held from July 24th to August 9th. We will keep you informed about how Thanyapura’s swimmers do.