All photos by Aric DiLalla
Alongside the 17 new world records set late last week at the Hamad Aquatic Center during the FINA World Swimming Championships were countless personal bests among the hundreds of participating athletes.
That includes Qatar’s Omar Hisham, who finished fifth in his heat in the 50-meter butterfly event with a time of 26.11, a self-proclaimed personal record.
“This is my home country and my family’s here, so I’m pretty proud about that,” he told Doha News. “I tried very hard in this competition, and it’s nice to represent my country worldwide on television.”
Born in 1998, Hisham is younger than most of the 900-odd swimmers competing in the tournament, which wraps up today. However, he’s no stranger to representing his country, having participated in the Youth Olympic Games this August in in Nanjing, China.
As of yesterday, Hungary led the medal count with eight trips to the podium, including five golds, according to results released by FINA. It was followed by Spain, which had four medals – all gold – and the Netherlands, which had eight medals, including three gold.
Israel participated in this year’s competition without any visible controversy. The country’s flag was seen flying outside the venue, and its swimmers were shown on broadcast monitors.
Last year, the Jewish state’s flag was removed from outside the aquatic complex and the country’s swimmers were snubbed by broadcasters.
Did you check out the championships? Thoughts?