|NAAZ president Mungwari challenges Govt, corporate world|
|Saturday, 04 August 2012 19:39|
Bruce Itai Chimani
Sports ReporterTHE President of the National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe (NAAZ) Joseph Mungwari has urged Government and the corporate sector to support sport in order for the national teams to perform well on the international scene.
Speaking on the backdrop of the ongoing London 2012 Olympics in a telephone interview, Mungwari reiterated that the reasons why Team Zimbabwe had only six representatives in athletics was not because the country lacked talent, but it was to do with complications which were beyond even the athletes’ control.
“Most of our athletes are out due to injury, but we have also had most of our talented athletes being disqualified, mainly because they have been said to be “wind assisted” when they compete. This means that their speeds were assisted by the wind and they were hence disqualified from participating at the Olympics,” Mungwari said.
The NAAZ boss also pointed out that the athletes were vetted in the United States where he said the climatic conditions were not favourable, and the chances for the athletes to be disqualified were even higher.
“If we had enough resources laid aside for sports as a nation, we would have sent our athletes to Europe or some other places where the conditions are more favorable for our athletes,” he pointed out.
Mungwari said that there had been significant improvement by his organisation in the development of world-class athletes, compared to their previous record. He noted that unlike other times when they sent one athlete to participate in the marathon at the Olympics, they have sent three athletes this time, including a female, namely Sharon Tavengwa, alongside Wirimai Zhuwawo and Cuthbert Nyasango.
Mungwari urged the Government and stakeholders at large to invest effectively into all sports, noting that sports like boxing, which are one-man sports, were easy to qualify in if strategies were put in place to groom talent.
“Many countries like Kenya, Mauritius, Ethiopia, Morocco and the like are benefitting from sport and we as Zimbabwe need to invest into building systems that will be effective in producing results for our country,” he added.