US University honours swimming starlet Mjimba

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Nomvula Mjimba

Gannon University, a private Catholic university in Pennsylvania, USA has honoured Zimbabwean swimmer Nomvula Mjimba following her memorable week in which she represented the nation at the ongoing 19th FINA World Championships in Budapest, Hungary.

The 20-year-old swimming ace was on Friday named Gannon University’s Student-Athlete of Week in recognition of her performances for the Zimbabwe team in Europe.

“Nomvula Mjimba (women’s swimming) and Alex Deemer (men’s swimming) have been named Gannon University Student-Athletes of the Week for the third week of the summer semester,” the University said in a statement on their official website on Friday.

“Throughout the summer, Gannon Athletics continues to spotlight its student-athletes that are spending time pursuing exciting opportunities on campus, in the community, and anywhere that they can learn and grow as an athlete, a professional, or a person.

“The Gannon Student-Athlete of the Week Award is sponsored all year long by Chick-Fil-A of Erie. Mjimba, a rising sophomore from Harare, Zimbabwe, is representing her country at the 19th Annual FINA World Championships, competing in both the 100 meter freestyle and 50 meter freestyle events. She finished in 54th place in the 50 free (time of 28.13 in a 50 meter pool) and in 46th place in the 100 free (1:02.20.),” the institution added.

The recognition in the US came on the same day Mjimba wrapped up her campaign at FINA World Championships on Friday by setting a new personal best in the 50m freestyle.

Nomvula Mjimba and Donata Katai at the FINA World Championships in Budapest

Mjimba came first in Heat four at the Duna Arena in 28.13 seconds beating her entry time of 28.38seconds to set a new personal best.

However, her time was not quick enough to make the top 16 to advance to the semi-final.  Mjimba was placed 54 out of 82 swimmers.

On Wednesday, she set another personal best in the 100m freestyle when she completed the race in 1minute 02.20seconds.

In addition to Mjimba Zimbabwe was also represented by the trio of Liam Davis, Donata Katai and Denilson Cyprianos at the global swimming meet.

Cyprianos was, however, forced to withdraw from the competition because of an injury. He was scheduled to compete in the 100m backstroke and 200m backstroke.

But the trio of Mjimba, Davis and Katai made some strides when they set personal best times in their respective events.

The Zimbabwean swimmers recently received IOC Olympic Solidarity Scholarships to boost their hopes of meeting the qualifying standards for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games.

Katai made her maiden appearance at the rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games last year where she set a personal best time in the 100m backstroke.

The FINA World Championships which are featuring swimming, diving, water polo, open water and artistic swimming will run until July 3.

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