The 2014 National Senior Swimming Championships which took place at Les Brown Pool in Harare, brought to the fore an interesting trend – brother vs brother or sister with sister.
There is nothing new about this trend, some of you will remember the Black family(tennis), the Flower brothers (cricket) and going across the Limpopo, the Ndungane brothers(Springboks). These sort of match-ups do very well in bringing up the human interest factor in sports and it’s amazing to note that Zim’s school sports is not lagging behind on that front.
Meet Zimbabwe’s siblings who share the same talent, swimming. They are enjoying a good run at the Championships and we (SSN) have noticed them. Remember the SSN Promise …
The National Championships are made up of provincial teams but these siblings make up their own family teams. There are all-brother teams – e.g the Burnetts, Chiangs, Onoratis and the Tomlinsons. There are the all-sister teams – e.g the Chayambukas, McAllisters, Matthews, Days and Doormans. Then there are the brother and sister teams – e.g the Ruschs, Bruces, Ndoros, Langridges and the Kies.
As in all teams, fights and disagreements arise and these sibling teams are no exception. Sibling rivalries exist. Whether brother or sister siblings, they all have one thing in common, “they fight a lot”. However, they make-up and make peace quite quickly too. Natasha Lawson whose brother James is about one and a half years older, said although they fight a lot they always make-up. “We are very close. Although we disagree, we usually make-up after about a day,” said Natasha. She is very supportive of James and so is he of her.
Brothers Andresious and Brendon Cyprianos said although they fight a lot, they too are close. “I motivate my young brother and set the standard for him to follow,” Andresious said. Brendan affirmed that his older brother does indeed set standards but he so far, has not been able to achieve those standards. Brendan said he supports his older brother in all he does. Andresious revealed that although he shares his relationship issues with his young brother, Brendon cannot keep secrets! That aside, Andresious credited his brother with being greatly talented. While Brendon credited his older brother with being extremely clever. That, is brotherly love right there!
Twin sisters Alli and Nita Gobey are 14-years-old and students at Lomagundi College in Chinhoyi. Alli is faster in backstroke while Nita is faster in the other three strokes. Although they are both competitive, they are happy when the other “makes the cut”. The twins support each other and have been on tour together. Alli was touring last year and Nita went along to support her. Besides swimming, they both love horse riding . The twins said they fight a lot about “silly things” but always make-up. “We are really close and we talk about everything,” Alli said. Nita said, “I am grateful my sister is always there for me.” The sisters share best friends, but their dress sense is very different.
Brother and sister Chris and Chimelle Batchelor both started swimming at age three and they both swim all four strokes – freestyle, backstroke, breastroke and butterfly. A smiling Chris said they fight a lot and his little sister was “annoying”, meanwhile sitting hugging her. Although they irritate each other, they have each other’s backs.
Zim’s swimming siblings are supportive and cheer each other on. They even take pictures of and video each other when the other is in the pool or on the podium. They have equally supportive parents who take them to practice and swim meets. These swimming siblings are writing their own history and greatness is theirs for the taking.