Youngest ever swimmer crosses Qiongzhou Strait

Source:Global Times Published: 2019/8/15 17:58:41

Zhou Yihan swims in the sea. Photo: screenshot of the video posted by Pear Video

A 9-year-old girl beat back attacks by jelly fish and overcame high seas to successfully swim 26.7 kilometers across the Qiongzhou Strait separating South China's Guangdong Province and Hainan Province. 

Zhou Yihan is the youngest on record to swim the strait, spending 13 hours in the water.

Zhou started swimming with nine adults in the early hours of August 7 and soon ran into difficulty. She was stung more than 20 times by jelly fish, before her parents in an escort boat managed to drive them away.  Next came unexpectedly high seas that stalled her forward progress. 

Her parents wanted their daughter to end her swim, but the girl told them, "I won't give up." 

Zhou, who lives in Guangzhou, Guangdong Province trained for a year, swimming six days a week, her father told Pear Video.

In the last month of her training, Zhou swam four to six kilometers a day.

Zhou said she was inspired by her father who made the swim across the strait last year.

Zhou arrives at the other side of the Qiongzhou Strait after 13-hour swim. Photo: screenshot of the video posted by Pear Video

 Zhou's swim finally ended at 6:45 pm after 13 hours in the water.

The Qiongzhou Strait is one of three Chinese straits. The strait is on average 30 kilometers wide.

Some 10-year-olds have also swum across the Qiongzhou Strait, including a girl who is a student at a Hainan high school.

Netizens gave the girl many thumbs up. "She is so strong-willed. I can't even swim two kilometers," one netizen wrote on Sina Weibo.


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