Western Jamaica well represented on national swim team

June 18, 2019
Team coach Yumi Morales (left) with team members (from second left) Rhys Hunter, Benjamin Davis, Starr Crooks, Deanna Norris, Mia Cunningham, Nia-Kai Campbell and Mathew Eaton.

The Amateur Swimming Association of Jamaica (ASAJ) last Thursday ratified the members to represent Jamaica at the 25th edition of the Goodwill Championship in Paramaribo, Suriname, with eight of the 40 members of the national team hailing from SailFish Swim Academy in western Jamaica.

The three-day competition will feature events in five age categories and is set to kick off on August 16, with local swimmers facing competition from Suriname, Barbados, St Lucia, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, The Bahamas, Grenada, French Guyana and Curacao.

Of the qualifying swimmers from the west, there are four girls and four boys.

The girls are: 12-year-olds Starr Crooks of Alcar Academy and Mia Cunningham of Montego Bay High School; 15-year-old Deanna Norris of St Ann’s Bay High; and 10-year-old Nia-Kai Campbell of Mount Alvernia Prep School.

The boys are: 10-year-old Nathan Wright of Montego Bay Christian Academy; 11-year-old Benjamin Davis, nine-year-old Matthew Eaton, and eight-year-old Rhys Hunter.

Vice-President of the ASAJ, Georgia Sinclair, said that the number of western-based swimmers on the team was a testament to the calibre of the work being done and the calibre of the coaches in the west. “The swimmers must be proud to be donning the colours of the black, green and gold. As VP swimming, I am particularly pleased that the vision of SailFish Swim Academy in particular, is being realised, bringing prominence to swimming in the west, which augurs well for swimming in general,” Sinclair said.

Loren-Ann Patterson, member of the National Development Squad, who represented at last year’s event, had a few encouraging words for the western-based youngsters as they prepare for their first international event.

“Relax, do not get nervous and execute well. Pay attention to the turns and finish strong. Eat, make friends and have fun! All the very best!” Patterson said.

The youngsters will showcase their talent in Montego Bay before the championship, at the Western Invitational Swim Event, slated for Saturday, July 6 at Wespow Park in Tucker, Montego Bay.

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