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Monday, September 20, 2021

Goggles on! GCC Aquatics Championships makes a splash in Qatar

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The tournament was postponed last year due to Covid-19 concerns. 

Calling all water-sports lovers! The much-awaited 28th Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Aquatics Championships will kick start in Doha on Thursday, the country’s Swimming Association has announced.

The event, held at the Hamad Aquatics Centre, was initially scheduled to take place last year but was postponed due to Covid-19 concerns. Now, with strict recessionary measures in place and optimistic coronavirus numbers, the competition is ready to make a splash.

Qatar crowned second with 19 medals at Arab Table Tennis Championship

Six Gulf countries will take part in three aquatic sports: swimming, diving, and water polo.

All competitions will take place in accordance with the laws of the International Swimming Federation [FINA] and under the regulations of the organising committee of the GCC.

The Qatar Swimming Association is also set to organise the fifth leg of the FINA Swimming World Cup 2021 in October.

Schedule, Competitions and More

Thursday and Friday will see the general stages of the swimming competitions of age groups 11-12, 13-14, 15-17 years old. Meanwhile, Saturday and Sunday will host the open and U-19 events, the committee announced.

The first day will include 24 races from different age categories, including morning and evening sessions.

The morning session will bring together 15 to 17-year-old athletes competing in the 800m and 50m freestyle, 400m medley, 100m butterfly, and 4x200m freestyle, as well as 13 to 14 years athletes competing in the 50m freestyle, 200m medley, 100m butterfly and 200m backstroke.

Meanwhile, the evening session will include the 400m freestyle, 50m butterfly, 100m breaststroke, 200m backstroke, 4 x 100m freestyle races for the 15-17 year category, and 400m freestyle 50m butterfly, 100m breaststroke and 4 x 100m for 13-14 years, 50m butterfly, 100m breaststroke and 4 x 100m freestyle for 11-12 years.

Diving competitions also will take place for age groups 11 years and below, 13 years and below, 14-15 years, as well as the public. Water polo, however, will be held for 18 years and below.

Championship-ready

Team Qatar swimmers and water polo players have spent a significant amount of time in training camps in Bulgaria to gear up for yet another phenomenal win.

In 2019’s GCC Aquatics Championships in Kuwait, the national team secured first place in the age groups for the fourth time in a row after winning 34 medals, including 17 gold medals, 10 silver medals, and 7 bronze medals.

For this year, the teams seek to score remarkable results to reflect the country’s development in water sports in a bid to double-down on their prominence in the region.


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