August 24, 2011
The 3rd World Deaf Swimming Championships" was held on August 7-13 in Portugal. KANAJI Yoshikazu (17), a Karatsu Trade High School senior in Saga Prefecture, won a gold medal each for 100- and 200-meter backstroke and a bronze medal for 50 meters.
His efforts that he developed his strength through practicing hard with hearing swimmers, bore three medals. "I am indeed glad. I want to make the record time shorter", he said, gaining a new fighting spirit.
Surrounded by the foreign swimmers who were over 180 centimeters in height, Yoshikazu, 166 centimeters tall, competed for the 100-meter backstroke, passing the preliminary contest at the record of 59'96". In the final, he beat a Japanese swimmer IBARA Ryutaro, a high school senior from Tokyo, winning a gold medal. In 200 meters, he topped out of the start and got away with all his power, winning another one.
This World Championships was one of the passing points for him. He hopes he enters a college/university and continues swimming at the intercollegiate conference.
Deaf swimmer aiming at World Deaf Swimming Championships