THE Zambia Amateur Swimming Union (ZASU) has thanked the Government for its support towards construction of the 90 Days Legacy Swimming pool which ensured Zambia hosted the swimming event during the 2012 Supreme Council for Sports in Africa (SCSA) Zone Six Youth Games in Lusaka.
ZASU vice-president Phil Thompson commended Government for the assistance rendered during preparation and hosting of the Zonal Games, saying that the onus was now on his union to repay the gesture with good results.
Hosts Zambia won two bronze medals during the swimming event through Tilka Paljik and Ralph Goveia with Thompson, saying this was a great feat as it was the first time Zambia was having a large number of finalists in the Zonal Games before.
He said Zambia entered 23 finalists for the first time as compared to the previous number of eight during the regional games held in Swaziland two years ago.
"It is a breakthrough for us because in a few years time, we will see better results and medals.
Our team is cosmopolitan and had the youngest swimmers in gala." he said.
Kasia Lewis and Shannon Hassen-Weltin, both 12-years old, were the youngest swimmers at the event though they held their own against the much older and experienced swimmers.
Thompson said the gala had 24 technical officials from different countries that included Zimbabwe, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia among others.
He also said that the swimming pool would be used to train trainers who would then go on to train other kids because we need a lot of swimmers for us to win a lot of medals and thus the focus of ZASU is to go to the grassroots.
And Thompson said the event, despite being held at the SCSA Zone Six Games, was a World Swimming Federation (FINA) gala as evidenced by the presence of a FINA gala referee and technical co-ordinator.
Thompson also said Zambia would be participating in the FINA World Championships short course with Milimo Mweetwa, Jade Howard and Ralph Goveia among the participants.