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Prosperity family hosts Zimbabwe bass fishing team

For the past 7 days, the Cochran family has housed 7 anglers from South Africa.

PROSPERITY, S.C. — Today marks the first day of the USA Black Bass World Championship on Lake Murray. 

It's an Olympic-level fishing tournament with teams from around the world.

One family in particular from Prosperity has opened their home to one of the fishing teams. 

You could call it, southern hospitality at its best. It's the form of kindness Tommie Cochran and his family are extending to the Zimbabwe bass fishing team as they compete this week. 

Cochran got a call from a friend to help another friend by being a guide and host family for this Zimbabwe team.

"Different cultures are coming into this area this week, different religions, different political views, different everything and the one thing we have in common is fishing. I had no problem bringing them into my house, bringing them into my family, because they are now like family," Cochran said.

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The team has been staying with the Cochran family the past week. Five have been in the house and two stayed in an outside camper.

Their bond of fishing has contributed to many meals together and sharing stories around the firepit. 

"The simplest creature comforts that we have, we take for granted and we probably not ought to," Cochran said.

Of course, these African fisherman are extremely grateful.

"Tommie and the family have been awesome to us, really enjoyed staying here and appreciate all the help they've given us," Gavin Fraser, Zimbabwe angler said.

They've learned quite a bit about southern culture and cuisine, too.

"Buffalo chicken dip! Keri's got an awesome recipe if you hit her up. Keri's a great cook, the food has been fantastic. And all the puddings, which one of our team members, he just hobbles around the kitchen when pudding's made and he loves it," Gavin Fraser and Barry Launder, Zimbabwe anglers said.

RELATED: Why Lake Murray was chosen to host Bass World Championship

Both the Cochran family and the Zimbabwe team are excited for an eventful week of competition ahead. 

Tonight there's an opening dinner gala and parade of nations starting at 7:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in Columbia. 

The fishing is open to the public to watch beginning tomorrow with the first day of practice. You just need to pay $5 at Dreher Island State Park.

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