Official Website of Brunei Darussalam National Olympic Council
Swimming his way to Europe
Wednesday, September 28, 2011

National coach Eric Landa at a
training session in Berakas
yesterday. Picture: BT/ Yee Chun

Eric Landa has planned well ahead to ensure the best for his swimmer.

Anderson Lim secured one of two London 2012 Olympic Scholarships for the Sultanate last week and the national swim coach will make sure that the money doesn't go to waste.

The Dutchman told The Brunei Times that he plans to take his swimmer to Europe next year to help him improve further.

"The scholarship came as a great surprise. We've already set out plans for the year and currently we will stick to it," said Landa when met at the Aquatics Centre of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Sports Complex in Berakas.

"The Olympic season will begin in January and we're already looking at how to fill the calendar. There are various options for training camps and overseas competitions," he added.

"It is a good idea to go to Europe because it will allow him (Lim) to be adjusted to the weather and the atmosphere," continued the national coach.

"Ideally it would be good if we can swim in the Olympic pool. I'm still working on it," added Landa.

Being the first ever in Brunei to receive the scholarships, Maziah Mahusin is the other athlete in the Sultanate to be given the opportunity.

The two will each receive US$1,000 a month to help with their training from September 2011 to August 2012.

Meanwhile, next on the calendar for Landa's swimmers will be a local 100-metre swimming club competition this weekend.

The national swimmers will be competing for their clubs and the tournament will be used to prepare for the upcoming Asian Age Group Swimming Championships in Jakarta.

"I believe this is a good idea instead of going for the usual 50m competition. It will help to identify potential swimmers especially those at a young age," said the former Egypt national swim coach.

"It is good that during such a competition the swimmers get to go back to their home coach and swim for the club," he added.

"I've given them the freedom to go back whenever as it is important for them to have a different level of fun and come back refreshed," continued Landa.

"The tournament in Jakarta is quite big and we're looking at the development of the swim team. We're aiming for the swimmers to produce their best times yet again," he added.

The coach previously mentioned that they have selected six athletes four swimmers, one diver and a syncro girl for the tournament.

Another big event on the calendar is the Fina/ Arena Swim World Cup 2011 in Singapore from Nov 4-5.

There are a total of seven legs Singapore, Dubai, Stockholm, Moscow, Berlin, Beijing and Tokyo but the national coach felt that the rest couldn't fit into the team's schedule.

"We're only going to Singapore as it fits well with the calendar and it's a lot easier since there is less travelling and less expensive," said Landa.

In addition, the coach is also working on not only the top swimmers but also at the grassroots level.

"We're looking to organise something that will help us find the next upcoming swimmers so that we can build them up from there," said the Dutchman.

"We're looking for at least some 50 swimmers from all ages and then pick up those that perform well," added the 39-year-old coach.

Another piece of good news revealed by Landa is that a three-day coaching course by Fina will be conducted here in early December. "This is definitely good and for the country to succeed in the sport, we are going to need more coaches to help develop the new generation of swimmers," said Landa. "We are going in the right direction and I'm hoping that we can land all the basics first."

Courtesy from Brunei Times