Namutebi lifts Uganda with double gold in Gaborone

Wednesday February 26 2020

Golden girl. Namutebi receives her gold after

Golden girl. Namutebi receives her gold after coming first in the 50m freestyle on Saturday in Botswana. COURTESY PHOTO  

By Makhtum Muziransa

The heat in Botswana could largely be the reason why Uganda had a tough experience at the Cana Zone IV Championships in Gaborone.

The personal bests have been far between for Uganda’s 21 competitive swimmers who have had to bear the brunt of temperatures exceeding 32 degrees Celsius. It is hot at home too but temperatures here are hardly getting to 30 degrees.

Probably, there was a point at this championship when the whole team looked at Kirabo Namutebi and hoped she could do ‘something’.

The Africa Juniors gold medallist started with winning silver in the 50m breaststroke (34.40) and two bronze medals in the 50m butterfly (29.97) and backstroke (32.27). Then she duly saved the championship with two gold medals in the girls’ 15-16 years 100m (1:00.45) and 50m freestyle (27.07) won yesterday and Saturday respectively.

As the event neared a climax yesterday, team captain Avice Meya also got to the podium after clocking 3:27.75 in the 200m butterfly.

“I need to keep working more in training,” Meya, who has one eye at the Olympics – the only swimming event she has not been to, said.

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“I got PBs from my butterfly events but I could have done better with the freestyles.”
Uganda had slightly better fortunes in the Masters’ Championship where all three team members Peter Ssebanakita, new National Council of Sports chairman Donald Rukare and coach Joseph Kabogoza won medals.

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