Mehluli Sibanda, Senior Sports Reporter
ZIMBABWE national Under-19 cricket team coach, Stephen Mangongo’s future in the job is in doubt with his employers due to carry out a review of the team’s performance at the Under-19 World Cup held in New Zealand at the start of the year.
The Zimbabwe Cricket board was meant to have met on 28 February with Mangongo up for discussion but that meeting was shelved up to until the end of the International Cricket Council Cricket World Cup Qualifier which Zimbabwe is hosting.
Even though ZC communications and media manager Darlington Majonga did not respond to questions sent to him last week, this publication has it on good authority that Mangongo’s days in the position are numbered.
“The ZC board was meant to meet on 28 February to discuss Mangongo’s future as Zimbabwe Under-19 coach. A report from him would have been tabled for the board’s consideration. However, the meeting was put on hold until after the World Cup Qualifier. From the look of things he might be fired,’’ said the source.
ZC chairman Tavengwa Mukuhlani recently vowed that coaches will be made to account for poor results, especially when they have been given all they need to succeed. Mukuhlani said the Under-19s did even worse than they did in 2016. This is despite the fact that they had better preparations and even went to New Zealand a month before the start of the tournament.
Mangongo’s latest appointment as national Under-19 coach came in September 2015 when he took over the post from interim mentor Walter Chawaguta. He took the Zimbabwean juniors to the Under-19 World Cup in 2016 in Bangladesh and this year in New Zealand. Before that, Mangongo was the coach of the national side from July to December 2014 and was sacked only eight weeks before the 2015 World Cup. He was fired when Zimbabwe lost all their eight matches on the Bangladesh tour at the end of 2014.-@Mdawini_29