Home Today's Paper Most Popular Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Subscription Blog Signin Register
Logo
Thursday, July 18, 2019 08:23:28 PM
Follow Us On: Facebook Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter

Crocs and rays no problem for unsung Asian swim heroes

By Agency
19th-Aug-2018       
Comments
Share your thought
Post a comment »
Read all () »


The plucky swimmers of far-flung nations who train in the sea where stingrays and crocodiles lurk are ready to strike a blow for the sport's minnows at the Asian Games.
As Olympic champions such as China's Sun Yang and Japan's Kosuke Hagino soak up the limelight, simply getting to Jakarta has been a remarkable achievement for the fresh-faced hopefuls from the Maldives and East Timor.
Better known for its sun-kissed blue lagoons, the Maldives is no island paradise for its competitive swimmers, who regularly suffer jellyfish stings in the murky waters off the capital Male.
"We see jellyfish and stingrays mostly and sometimes eels so I get pretty scared," 14-year-old Hulva Khulail told AFP.
"I've been stung so many times," added the pint-sized schoolgirl, who takes the plunge in the 50, 100 and 200 metres breaststroke in Jakarta.
"It itches so much you have to stop and pour vinegar on it. And also the sea is very polluted."
Such is the parlous state of swimming in the Maldives there is no proper pool available.
Khulail and team mate Haish Hassan instead use the Indian Ocean, sharing a 25-metre area marked out by floating blocks with fish and other creatures -- often at night.
"It's hard for us to swim in a pool because the water is very dense," explained science buff Hassan, also 14, who will tackle the backstroke and breaststroke, plus the 400m freestyle.
"The seawater is easier to swim in, but sometimes practice gets cancelled because of the water pollution. We've all complained about it."
Another swimmer poised to become one of the unsung heroes of the Games is East Timor's Imelda Felycita Ximenes Belo, who only learned to swim five years ago.
The 19-year-old trailblazer will be the first Timorese swimmer to compete at the regional event, which officially opens on Saturday.
But Belo, whose role model is American Olympic star Katie Ledecky, risks life and limb as she trains in an ocean infested with saltwater crocodiles.
Many beaches in East Timor are unswimmable and communities live in fear of crocodile attacks -- but it does not stop Belo.
"There's crocodiles in the sea and they can be really dangerous," shrugged freestyler Belo, whose other Asian Games goal is to take a selfie with her crush, Singapore hunk Joseph Schooling.
"I can't go out too deep because you can't see. My parents worry that I might get eaten but I just pray to God to protect me from the crocs."
For Nepal's swimmers, it's not so much sea monsters they fear but the prospect of turning into couch potatoes -- for seven months of the year it is too cold to use the country's only 50m pool.
"We can only train for five months and you can also have political strikes too so you lose more days," said Sirish Gurung, who will swim the 50 and 100m freestyle.
"In the winter there's nothing to do, I just eat burgers and fries. It's a miracle that we're here!"

Tariff
Add Rate

News Archive

Inside The New Nation

Editorial »

Ensure hassle-free higher education for them


THE results of this year's Higher Secondary Certificate and equivalent examinations under country's 10 education boards were announced yesterday where the combined pass rate rose by 7. 29 percent - that means it's now 73.93 per cent from last year's 66.64 per cent. The number of GPA-5 achievers in the ...

City »

Students of the city`s Motijheel Ideal School and College exulting over the brilliant results of the HSC examination. The snap was taken from the premises of the institution on Wednesday.


.

International »

China gifts military warship to Sri Lanka in sign of deepening cooperation


PTI, Beijing : China has gifted a warship to Sri Lanka, in the latest sign of its deepening military cooperation with the strategically located island nation in the Indian Ocean. Also, China's rolling-stock manufacturer has announced that it would shortly deliver nine "new type" of diesel trains to Sri Lanka.The China-gifted ...

Entertainment »

Peya Bipasha`s Eid telefilm Opekkha


Sheikh Arif Bulbon :Gleaming model and actress Peya Bipasha has recently acted in an Eid telefilm titled Opekkha under the direction of Maksudur Rahman Bishal. This was Peya’s first work for the upcoming Eid. In the telefilm, Peya Bipasha will be seen against Emon on the screen. Promising TV actress ...

Editorial »

Accidents at level crossings


A newly-married couple and eight others of the bridal party were killed when a Dhaka-bound train rammed their microbus at an unmanned level crossing in Sirajganj's Ullapara upazila on Monday evening. The fatal accident has spoiled unmet dream of the couple. It's due to utter negligence of the Railway Authorities ...

Football »

Argentine sport court member advices Messi to apologize


AP, Buenos Aires :Lionel Messi should apologize for his harsh comments at the Copa America in order to avoid a sanction, an Argentine member of sport's highest court said on Monday.Following defeats in the last two finals, Messi had another frustrating end to the tournament when he was sent off ...

International »

Government restrictions on religion increasing worldwide


AP, New York  :Government restrictions on religion have increased markedly in many places around the world, not only in authoritarian countries, but also in many of Europe's democracies, according to a report surveying 198 countries that was released Monday.The report released by the Pew Research Center, covering developments through 2017, ...

International »

Erdogan hails S-400 deal as Turkey marks 2016 coup bid


AFP, Istanbul :President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday hailed the controversial delivery of a Russian missile defence system despite the threat of US sanctions, as Turkey marked the third anniversary of a bloody coup attempt.Just days before the anniversary, the first batch of the Russian S-400 defence system was delivered ...

Business & Economy »

HMD Global launches two Nokia Smart Phones


Economic Reporter :HMD Global, the home of Nokia phones, launched Nokia 3.2 and Nokia 2.2 in Bangladesh.The Launching ceremony was held at a city hotel on Tuesday.  Farhan Rashid, Head of Business of HMD Global Bangladesh, Raquibul Kabir, Managing Director of Union Group, Syed MostahidalHoq, Managing Director of Daraz Bangladesh ...

Entertainment »

Lea Michele to star in Same Time, Next Christmas


Actor Lea Michele is set to star in ABC's Christmas movie titled Same Time, Next Christmas. In the movie, the Glee alum will play Olivia Henderson, a young woman who meets her childhood sweetheart during her family's annual Christmas visit to Hawaii. After being separated by distance and time, the ...

Entertainment »

Amala Paul reveals she is in a relationship


Actress Amala Paul, who is awaiting the release of her upcoming film 'Aadai' on July 19, has revealed that she is in a relationship. It is to be noted that the pretty actress fell in love with Director Vijay while working for 'Deiva Thirumagal' and the duo got married in ...

Cricket »

Cricket World Cup team of the tournament


England won the World Cup for the first time after beating New Zealand in Sunday's thrilling final at Lord's, bringing the curtain down on a dramatic event featuring some superb individual performances.AFP Sport names its team of the tournament:Rohit Sharma (India)The 32-year-old emerged as the tournament's star batsman, making history ...

Cricket »

I will be apologising for rest of my life - Stokes on overthrows drama


Ben Stokes has been saying sorry a lot lately. His latest apology was to the people of New Zealand for one of the most outrageous sporting flukes that contributed to England winning the Cricket World Cup at the expense of the country of his birth.Stokes had already broken New Zealand ...

International »

Iran tanker will be freed after guarantees, says Britain


British foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt sought to ease tensions with Iran on Saturday, saying a tanker held by Gibraltar would be released if Tehran guaranteed it was not heading to Syria.He said he had a "constructive call" with his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif, who he said assured him that ...

Entertainment »

Deepika’s Veronica stays etched; shares sneak peeks as Cocktail turns seven


Bollywood’s leading lady Deepika Padukone gave an electrifying performance in one of her most strongly essayed characters- Veronica which stays as one of her most memorable characters. As Cocktail clocks seven years today, the actress took to social media to give a shout-out to one of her most rebellious characters ...

 
Items that you save may be read at any time on your computer, iPad, iPhone or Android devices.
 
Are you new to our website? Do you have already an account at our website?
Create An Account Log in here
Email this news to a friend or like someone
Email:
Write a comment to this news