Through the Year 1991
Laila Vakil - GB's FIRST EVER GOLD MEDAL WINNER at WORLD LEVEL in Synchro. The medal was won in Salerno, Italy at Junior World's. Leila, who swam for Rushmoor at club level, also finished in second place on the Solo.
In the competition itself Laila swam a beautiful, very difficult routine, but unfortunately was beaten into 2nd place, by yes you've guessed, the Japanese. Their soloist was exceptional and well deserved her success. We were looking forward to the National Anthem being played, but had to make do with the Union Jack on the 2nd place flag pole. It was a superb performance from an excellent competitor who knew what she wanted to do and did everything possible to achieve her goal. We were certainly very proud of her". JENNY GRAY
"We always moan when it's sunny for a synchro event, but for once I was glad of it, for the Junior World Championships was held in an outdoor pool adjacent to the beach in Salerno, Southern Italy. The setting was superb and for Great Britain, the results were the most exciting for many a year.
We waited for Laila to swim her routine during solo training. I had promised to video it. At the allotted time, I placed myself up in judges chair, Laila started and the heavens opened. I hid under the sun umbrella which was being blown in the storm. Rosy Surch the coach, sat diligently out in the rain and Laila kept swimming. We were hardly able to see her through the rain drops and at the end they abandoned training and I felt abandoned, unable to emerge from the umbrella with the video camera. I was eventually rescued and the recording was helpful.