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MBABANE – Swim Lab winter Championships have been washed away by the coronavirus outbreak.

The swimming competition was to be attended by swimmers from clubs coming from Mpumalanga, Botswana, Mozambique and KwaZulu-Natal (KZN). Swim Lab coach Welcome Nhlabatsi confirm yesterday that they had no choice but to cancel the championships. This is the third event for swimming to be called off after the COVID-19 outbreak. Swim Lab had to cancel their trip to Newcastle, South Africa for the South Africa Level competitions and the schools gala was called off last week. The winter championships were to be held in the country for the first time.


“We had to call off the winter championships due to the coronavirus. We are taking precautions concerning the virus and the warning from the sports authorities. The decision was based on safety first and we have alerted all the clubs that were invited over the calling off of the competitions,” said Nhlabatsi. The championships were to be sponsored by Viva Beverages as they are partners of the club based at the University of Eswatini (UNESWA) Sports Emporium. “We want to thank Viva for the sponsorship. We sat down with the sponsor and we agreed to call off the gala which was meant to be on the first weekend of June. The sponsor is still on board and we are looking at hosting the competition maybe in August as the first competition of next season, if the situation allows though,” he added.


“It’s sad but what can we do. We were working hard preparing for the competition. We want it to be an annual event. Like I had complained about not having competition in the country, this would have been a good test for my swimmers to gauge their standard against the world at home. We just pray and hope that the coronavirus is brought under control,” he concluded.
Swim Lab also suspended their training session due to the outbreak and luckily their season was already over having hosted the national championships a fortnight ago.

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