KAMPALA- US-based Ugandan female swimmer Rebecca Ssengonzi returns to the national team set up ahead of the August 19-28 All Africa Games in Rabat, Morocco.
Ssengonzi was not available for selection at the recently concluded World Championships in South Korea but she can now join the group of Ugandan swimmers chasing for a place at next year’s Olympics by competing in Morocco.
Fortunately for her, trips to North Africa have been largely fruitful. Last year, she managed to win Uganda’s only swimming medal at the Africa Youth Games – a bronze in the 50m fly (28.80).
In 2015, she also won Uganda’s only continental medals at the Africa Junior Swimming Championships in Cairo; silver in the 100m fly and bronze in the 400m individual medley.
She now has a chance to test her abilities in the 50m and 100m fly at the senior level. But she will also compete in the 50m freestyle, an event most swimmers from developing swimming nations do at the Olympics, and 200m fly.
For the male swimmers, Ambala Atuhaire gets another quick bite at the cherry. For him, this is a chance – one that Selina Katumba, Avice Meya and Tendo Mukalazi most likely won’t have – to build on last month’s performances from South Korea.
Atuhaire managed a new national record (53.89) in the 100m free and a 24.69 personal best in the 50m free in Gwangju but will do six more races including one of his favourite events (200m free) in Rabat.
Uganda Swimming Federation (USF), however, continue to push government for at least two more slots on the Rabat-bound team.
“We have two slots until further notice,” USF general secretary Moses Mwase, told Daily Monitor.
“We are appealing for two more so we can do mixed relays as a bare minimum but also to expand our qualifying bracket for Tokyo 2020,” he added.
In Korea, Uganda’s quartet managed a new national record (4:00.09) in the 4*100m mixed freestyle relay and are currently ranked sixth in Africa.
200m fly (2:28.10), 100m fly (1:03.74)
50m fly (28.80), 50m free (28.70)
200m free (2:00.51), 100m back
(1:03.99), 100m fly (1:02.99),
100m free (53.89), 50m breast (32.04),
50m fly (27.28), 50m back (28.70),
50m free (24.69)