THE Saint Lucia Amateur Swimming Association will this week stage the 27th Annual OECS Swim Championship at the Rodney Heights Aquatic Centre.
Defending champions Grenada, along with Antigua and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, are expected on island today. For most of the overseas participants, the RHAC is like home as they competed here in 2015.
After 26 championships, the scores are locked at 13 a piece between Grenada and host Saint Lucia. Team Saint Lucia will be fielding swimmers from the 8-and-under to over-18 categories.
The Grenadians are expected to go all out to outclass Saint Lucia, but the two countries will be keeping a close eye on Antigua and Barbuda, who finished an impressive second place last year in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
Events commence at 5:00 p.m. with the first events being the 8-and-under 100-metres freestyle and 9-10 400-metres freestyle.
The action in the pool will take a break for the official opening ceremony scheduled from 6:30 p.m. with the march past of teams, playing of the various national anthems, and addresses by key stakeholders, including SLASA President, Eddie Hazell, and others.
Following the opening ceremony, the most-talked-about relay races will start from 7:00 p.m. and will bring the curtains down on day 1.
On Saturday, the warm-up sessions will run from 8:00 a.m. to 9:50 a.m. and competition starts at 10:00 a.m.
On Sunday, the OECS Congress will take place from 8:00 a.m. until 9:30 a.m. at the RHAC and so, too, the warm-up session from 8:00 a.m. to 9:50 a.m. The final day of competition starts from 10:00 a.m. onwards and will be followed by the awards and closing ceremony following completion of pool competition.
With 34 selected swimmers and 5 reserves, the local team has been preparing feverishly as they get all set to compete at the highest level. However, some of the top swimmers will be absent this year due to academic commitments overseas.
Saint Lucia squad reads: Mila Festini Cromer, Fayth Jeffery, Diego Vargas, Antoine Destang, Amelia Joseph, Jasmine Steide, Jermina Odlum-Smith, Anais Bataillard, Karic Charles, Therron Herelle, Ethan Hazell, Naima Hazell, Naekeisha Louis, Ziv Reynolds, D’Andre Blanchard, Akim Ernest, Marissa Louisy, Mikaili Charlemagne, Mya Hilaire, Shalini Joseph, Terrel Monplaisir, Jayhan Odlum-Smith, Jamarr Archibald, Mikaela Casimir, Eden Crick, Mya Peter, Abbie Pultie, Nicolas Mc Lennon, Omar Alexander , Devin Boodha, Shernice Popo, Vanessa Eugene, Michael Louis Fernand, and Johnny Calderon.