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Egyptian Farida Osman breaks new ground for Arab swimming

August 3, 2013

Doing Egypt proud: Osman makes swimming final.

Doing Egypt proud: Osman makes swimming final.

Teenage Egyptian swimmer Farida Osman made history on Friday night as she became the first Arab female swimmer to reach a final at the World Championships.

The 18-year-old booked her place in Saturday’s 50m freestyle final by virtue of a stunning perfomance in the semi-finals where she clocked an impressive 26.12 after recovering from a relatively slow start.

Earlier in the day she had already made history by becoming the first female from the Arab world to reach the semi-finals, let alone the final, after qualifying in 11th place.

Osman, who won the 50 fly at the world junior championships in Lima in 2011 at the age of 16 in 26.67, has been in fine form recently and won the same event at the Mediterranean Games earlier this summer in 26.13.

Now she will be rubbing shoulders with the likes of Olympic champions Dana Vollmer and Ranomi Kromowidjojo when she takes to the pool for Saturday’s showpiece in Barcelona.

This is definitely new ground for women’s swimming in the Arab world and for Osman who is tipped to have a bright future in the sport.

Later this year she will be attending college at the University of California, Berkeley, working alongside American phenom Missy Franklin and other top swimmers.

She will be coached by the renowned Terri McKeever, who is known for producing world class swimmers like Natalie Coughlin and Catlin Leverenz.

But it won’t all be rosy for Osman; a lot of hard work is required for further progression in swimming, and coach McKeever is known to be a hard task master.

However, if she shows the mental toughness to survive the programme you can expect to see even further success for Osman in the near future.

No matter what happens on Saturday in the final, though, she has already surpassed all expectations for the time being and pushed Arab women’s swimming into new territory. Good luck young woman, make us proud.

Sport360

 

 

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