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Kathryn Mathers

Zimbabwean swimmer and Olympic gold medal winner, was born in Harare, Zimbabwe, on 16 September 1983. Kirsty attended the Harare Dominican Convent High School. Her parents, Rob and Lyn Coventry, own the Harare-based household chemical company, Omnichem. In 1989 six-year-old Kirsty, who had been taught to swim by her mother, was breaking records at the Highlands Swimming Club. At ten she was a dominant swimmer for Pirates Swimming Club under the coaching of Charles Mathieson. Kirsty was recruited by Kim Bracken for the Auburn University swimming team in Alabama. By December 2010 Kirsty Coventry had won seven Olympic medals, the most individual medals for an African athlete.

Kirsty was nominated as Zimbabwe’s National Sports’ person of the year in 1999 when she represented her country at the All-Africa Games in Johannesburg. At the 2000 Olympics in Sydney she was the first Zimbabwean to reach a semifinal in any ...

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Rosemarijn Hoefte

was born on 20 August 1990 in the small town of Sauwerd, in the northeasternmost province of Groningen, the home of her mother, Nelly Deemter. Her Surinamese Javanese father, Rudi, migrated from Suriname to Groningen in the 1970s, a period when almost a quarter of the Surinamese population left for the Netherlands in search of work and in anticipation of independence in 1975. A substantial group of Surinamese Javanese migrants ended up in the province of Groningen. Ranomi’s only sibling was an older brother named Chjanoy. Her parents were the owners of a karate school.

Kromowidjojo (also known as “Kromo”) learned to swim before she was 3 years old, and she earned her first two swimming certificates when she was only 4. Soon afterward she started to race in competitions. In 2008 she moved to the Dutch city of Eindhoven to join a team trained by Jacco Verhaeren ...