Fiji Swimming is proud to announce that Fiji’s first medal from the 16th Pacific Games currently underway in Samoa, is from Swimming. Matelita Buadromo swam a strong race crossing the finish line to win herself a Bronze place in the Women’s 5km Open Water. The course was right outside the Sheraton Samoa Beach Resort, creating a picturesque backdrop for the spectators and team supporters that waited on shore and cheered on. The sport of Swimming comprises of Pool events, as well as the Open Water event.
Swimmers Matelita Buadromo and Jeremiah Faktaufon represented Team Fiji in the water this morning, and are the first of the swimming athletes to compete, with others scheduled to compete later in the pool events tomorrow. Buadromo has been training tirelessly dating back several months and even years. In addition to the physical pressures, the mental preparations have been equally testing because Open Water demands a different level of preparations with the natural element of the open sea making it difficult to predict race conditions.
In 2019, Fiji Swimming hosted several meets offering opportunities for our athletes to qualify for the Pacific Games. These meets also included Open Water competitions that would also provide the relevant race experience. Matelita and Jeremiah qualified at a meet hosted in Volivoli Beach Resort in Rakiraki on March 23, and since then have been putting in some serious time with preparations. Open Water is not as straightforward with different factors that affect how athletes prepare; from tides, winds, and current.These make it tough to prepare, and demand race experience as a crucial part of preparations. Team Head Coach, Sharon Smith shared that the team is very proud of Matelita and Jerry. “It was a very rough course for all, but they did fantastic. This is a great start to the games, which have provided the timely boost for the swim team with the inspiring bronze medal performance from Ma” Smith shared.
Tomorrow marks the beginning of the pool events, and we are excited to see how the team will be placed at the heats tomorrow morning, with an indication of the competition, as finalists will later progress into the finals in the evening.
We continue to wish our swimmers the very best, and offer our cheers to the bigger Team Fiji contingent who will be working together these next few days to contribute to the overall medal tally. Go Fiji Go!