Wednesday, March 22, 2023
First Swimmer representing Eritrea in the Olympics.

First Swimmer representing Eritrea in the Olympics.

A Young Eritrean swimmer from Helsingborg, Sweden will be making his debut in the Tokyo Olympics representing the Eritrean flag. Efrem Ghirmai is inspired by his love for the Eritrean nation despite growing up in Sweden. He competes in the 50 meters butterfly and qualified for the Olympics after he swam in the World swimming Championships in 2019 for his family’s home country of Eritrea.

Efrem stopped swimming after the Swedish Championships 2016, but decided to give it one more go as he began his studies in marine studies. Efrem has a dual Swedish and Eritrean citizenship. He recently graduated as a sea captain after living in Gothenburg. For the past two years where at the age of 25 he is going for his last hurrah while also giving his career a story book ending. He has been practicing very hard and is ready for the big showdown in Tokyo taking his personal best of 23.92 in the 50 meter freestyle which is hovering around a possible top 20 finish. He has previously gotten 24 seconds or below on 3 occasions before but seems to be on a mission this past few months as he has been able to do that number with ease. His goal has been to focus and get in shape and get back to his Swedish national championship days as he represents Eritrea.

Efrem has deep connections with Eritrea as his family were involved with the Eritrean struggle for independence. He takes his oath to the Eritrean flag very seriously and has plans to contribute to the growth of swimming as a sport in Eritrea.
It is to be recalled that Efrem and a team make another Eritrean-Dane Daniel Christian represented the Eritrean colors in the world championships. Daniel who competes in the 100 meter had also qualified but because only 1 spot is allowed by FINA for Eritrea as a wild card, he opted to stay put during these olympics. Daniel should also be congratulated for his contributions to the very young Eritrean swim team.

Congratulations to the Eritrean Swimming Federation on their hard work and dedication to help improve Swimming as a sport in Eritrea. While there may not be many olympic size swimming pools the Red Sea shores extending over 1000 KM of clear and white sandy beaches should still be able to create the next big star in Eritrea. Efrem Ghirmai has plans to help develop the sport and will be reaching out to the world with his networks and Eritreans around the world should support this important cause. Swimming must become Eritrea’s sport soon.

untitled image has researched the 2022 Olympic entries and found out how Efrem compared from the 73 swimmers that were in his heats. His time puts him in the top 45 category. His event at the Tokyo Olympics took place on Friday July 30th, 2021 starting with the very 1st heat all the way to heat number 11. Efrem made history with a respectable finish in his first Olympics.


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