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Temafa’s Love For Swimming

Temafa’s Love For Swimming
Temafa Yalimaiwai with his family before leaving for the Commonwealth Youth Games in the Bahamas. Photo: Justine Mannan
July 30
11:00 2017

For most young boys in high school, the dream of playing a sport they love and representing their country does not cross their minds until later in life.

For 15-year-old, Temafa Yalimaiwai, he is living out his dream as he represented Fiji for the second time in swimming- but this time at the Commonwealth Youth Games in the Bahamas. Swimming is not considered a major sport in the country, but that has not stopped Yalimaiwai from pursing the one hobby that he has grown to love.

“I started swimming when I was about four-years-old, being that young I used to love going into the water,” Yalimaiwai said.

“I think my parents saw how much I loved swimming and they got me to actually take swimming up as a sport. At first I enjoyed it but then as time went by I started competing in competitions. It was there I started to take it seriously. When I was first called to represent Fiji, I was really excited and honoured but did not know what to expect. I took part in the New South Wales State Age Group championships last year and won a bronze medal that was probably one of my most proud moments.

“Since then I have been always trying to better myself in the pool because while swimming is not a major sport, there are a lot of good swimmers in the country. So like I feel the constant need to always try to do better and get really good, because I want to go far with this sport.

“If I can improve and become good while I’m still young then when I get older I will be better and be able to achieve more.”

The Marist Brothers High School student has not had it easy especially balancing school work and swimming, but what keeps Yalimaiwai motivated is the fact that he wants to be a role model to his young brother and sister.

“It has been hard work trying to balance my school work and swimming. But I have a little brother, Samuel, who is also into swimming and a little sister so being the eldest I want to be a good role model to them. I want to teach them that playing sports is fine but education is also important as well, so I hope that what I have achieved will motivate them to aim high and achieve their goals as well.”

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