Khalid al Kulaibi, Oman’s top open water swimmer who finished a creditable fifth in the 5km marathon swimming competition at the fourth Asian Beach Games in Phuket, Thailand in November last year, was felicitated by the Oman Swimming Association’s (OSA) board for the achievement on Tuesday.
Kulaibi’s performance was the best show by an Omani swimmer at the Asian level.
Kulaibi had clocked 59m47s, while Kazakhstan’s Vitaliy Khudyakov claimed the gold medal in 58m39.05s. China’s Zhongyi Qiao (58m41.02s) and Syria’s Mohammad Saleh (58m49.06s) completed the podium, while China’s Yuanpeng Lang (59m43.07s) was fourth.
Taha al Kishry, the OSA chairman, presented Kulaibi with a cash award on the sidelines of the association’s first board meeting of the year.
Kishry thanked the Ministry of Sports Affairs and the Oman Olympic Committee for supporting swimming and said Kulaibi’s effort at the Asian competition was ‘testimony to the progress made by Omani swimmers’.
The OSA’s board meeting was chaired by Kishry and attended by Qais al Zakwani, the general secretary, and other board members.
Kishry also praised Oman’s junior team that recently won six medals at the GCC shortcourse championship in Dubai, UAE. He also pointed to the qualification of four Omanis as FINAaccredited international open water referees.