Report and pics from Mario Rodrigues
Daijiworld Media Network - Pune (SP)
Pune, Oct 23: Mangalorean Aaron D'Souza bagged bronze medal in the men's 200m butterly event at the third edition of the Commonwealth Youth Games being held at the Shiv Chhatrapati sports City, Balewadi in the city, on Friday October 17.
In fact, Aaron was in the second position till the first 100 metres of the event, before he was pushed out of the silver medal contention by Dan Vickers of England and hence, had to be content with the bronze.
Lachlan Staples picked up another gold from the pool for Australia, winning the event in style with a games record time of 1:58.67 seconds. Dan won the silver with a time of 2:01.88 seconds, while Aaron got the bronze with a time of 2:03.43 seconds.
Aaron's grand father Raphael Pereira is from Karkala, while grandmother Leticia Pereira is from Kulshekhar Mangalore. His mother Lydia D'Souza is from Karkala, with father Agnel D'Souza hailing from Kumta in Uttara Kannada district.
16-year old Aaron is pursuing science, and is a student of the 12th grade in St Joseph's Indian Composite college, Bangalore. His swmming coach has been Pradeep Kumar, who happens to be also the India coach. He has been undergoing rigorous training at Basavanagudi Aquatic Centre in Bangalore.
Aaron has a voracious appetite for winning, which can be gauged by the fact that he has so far won 19 medals at the international level. At state level, he has won 133 medals so far, 14 medals at the zonal level and 20 medals at the district level. His medals tally comprises of 181 gold, 50 silver and 21 bronze medals.
Aaron has created 23 national records, 14 individual records, nine team records and a team record at the international level.
His father Agnel Santan D'Souza is self employed at Bangalore and his mother Lydia works as teacher. His parents had settled down in Mumbai for the last 25 years, but shifted base to Bangalore five years ago, for the cause of his swimming training.
Aaron, a young and talented swimmer, has the potential to become the best swimmer of the country and win medals for the country at the international level. His present performance compares favourably with international swimmers of his age. He won medals at Bangkok, Colombo, Jakarta, Islamabad and the Commonwealth Youth Games at Pune. He missed the Beijing Olympics berth in 2008 by a whisker, but he made it to the Beijing Olympics as a spectator, as Coca-Cola sponsored his trip to China, as part of the 'Mission 2012 London Olympics'.
Aaron has set his eyes on the London Olympics now. Those who know his capabilities have no doubt that he will represent the country in the next edition of the Olympics.