Monday September 24, 2012
Wedding put off for swim feat
By JOSEPH KAOS Jr
SEPANG: Estino Taniyu's remarkable feat of swimming across the 33.6km-wide English Channel came at a price: he had to postpone his wedding to his childhood sweetheart which was scheduled for this month.
The 24-year-old Sabahan, however, is grateful that his fiancee Fatrah Marijin, 19, was willing to wait.
“I explained to her that the swim was a big moment for me, thankfully, she was understanding,” said Estino, adding that the ceremony may be held at the end of the year.
Estino, who is a Bajau and hails from Semporna, said he dedicated his success to Malaysians.
The Malaysian Royal Navy personnel was part of the 1Malaysia English Channel Unity Swim Expedition, which also involved a six-member relay team which also completed the challenge of swimming across the English Channel.
The relay team, which comprised of Mohd Roslan Mohd Zawawi, Mohd Khairul Faizal Mazli, Mohd Salleh Mahmor, Buranurdin Sali, Sharizal Omar and Mohd Zulfadhli Mahamad, achieved their feat at 4pm on Thursday in 14 hours and 30 minutes.
Estino was supposed to be part the relay team, but after three weeks of training in Dover, his coach Arof Omar recommended he swim solo.
“I knew I could do it,” said Estino, who took off from Dover Beach at 8.41am (Malaysian time) and reached Sandy Beach, Calais, in France, in a time of 13 hours and 45 minutes.
His time was the second fastest by a Malaysian in the English Channel, the fastest being Lennard Lee's nine hours and 45 minutes in 2004.
Datuk Abdul Malik Mydin was the first Malaysian to swim across the channel in 2003 and clocked 17 hours and 35 minutes, but unlike Estino and Lee, he swam in a protective cage.
The team arrived at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) yesterday morning to a hero's welcome from friends and family.
The expedition was organised by the Malaysian 7 Continents Exploration Club, which is under the patronage of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and headed by Mount Everest climber Muhamad Muqharabbin Mokhtarrudin.