THE National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe (Naaz) will this month host international sprints and jumps seminars for local coaches that will be facilitated by renowned experts from Cuba and Botswana.
The high profile courses are set for between 26 November and 2 December in the country’s two largest cities, Harare and Bulawayo. One of the experts OT Mogomotsi Otetswe, a renowned and experienced sprints guru from emerging athletics powerhouse Botswana, will be making his second trip to Zimbabwe this year, and has been credited for a record 36 Zimbabwe junior athletes qualifying for the African Junior Championships which were held in June in Algeria in June.
The Zimbabwean emerging talent set a national and African record of 16,30 metres in triple jump through Chengetayi Mapaya, among the pick of gold and silver medals in the 100m and also in the sprint relays.
The Cuban expert Juan Alfonso Martinez, who hails from a country renowned for its exploits in field events, will be making a maiden trip to Zimbabwe.
The national association has already extended invites to local coaches across the country’s 10 provinces for the three series seminars.
Harare will host the Elite jumps course from 24 November to 26 November, before the coaches converge to the City of Kings for the Elite Sprints gathering set for 29 November and 30 November.
The coaches will be back in the capital for another Elite Sprints course pencilled for 1 December and 2 December.
An ecstatic Naaz director for coaching and talent identification Phakamile Lisimati said the local coaches would hugely benefit from the international seminars which will see them being awarded special certificates equivalent to the national Level 2 qualification.
“Our coaches will benefit immensely as the experts have a proven record of performance and results, with both having coached at the highest level, including the Olympics and the World Championships for their respective countries and specialising in the events they have been invited for,’’ said Lisimati.
Lisimati said the seminars had the blessings of the World athletics mother body, the International Amateur Athletics Associations (IAAF).
“The seminars are part of the IAAF recommended exchange programme in which regions are encouraged to share coaching and officiating information via seminars and workshops. Our coaches will be awarded special certificates from the host Federation (Naaz) that will be equivalent to our national Level 2 coaching certificate on specialisation,” said Lisimati.
Meanwhile, Naaz will host the World Junior and Youth Olympics Camp from 1 December to 10 December.
The training camp is for selected youths and juniors meant to prepare the athletes for participation in their respective age groups in local, continental and international events.