Zim athletics team falters in Botswana


THE Zimbabwe athletics team that took part in the Southern Region Senior Athletics Championships at University of Botswana in Gaborone performed dismally, coming eighth out of the nine countries that participated in the competition.

Sports Reporter

The 32-member team which comprised mostly of junior athletes brought back six medals.

Namibian athlete Hilalia Johannes romped home first in the women’s 5 000m race in 15 minutes 44,53sec while Midlands athlete Sithulisiwe Zhou grabbed silver in 17 minutes 20,40sec.

Enlitha Ncube from Zimbabwe picked up bronze in 17 minutes 47,60sec.

In an interview with Southern Eye Sport soon after arrival from Botswana on Monday, Zhou said it had been a very tough competition.

“The competition was very stiff because some of the athletes I was competing against have taken part in the Olympics before, but I am happy with the time that I recorded because I am improving. The competition also helped me prepare for another one in Cape Town, South Africa, on June 22,” she said.

The second silver medal came from Maryjoy Mudyiravanji, who came home in four minutes 34,13sec behind Namibia’s Lavinia Haitage who scooped gold in four minutes 28,10sec. Takudzwa Muchichwa got silver in high jump in 2,02m while Botswana’s Takaone Gobe  bagged  gold with a leap of 2,08m.

Muchichwa said despite getting the silver medal, he was not overally impressed with his performance.

“I did my best for the country, but I still feel I could have done more because my personal best is 2, 11m,” he said.

Harare Athletics Club long distance runner Elijah Mabhunu missed out on bronze after finishing fourth in three minutes 54,51sec in the men’s 1 500m race.

The gold went to Zambia’s Harry Mulenga in three minutes 49,87sec with Mthabisi Ndwandwe from Swaziland winning silver in three minutes 51,63sec while Botswana’s Sheppard Kenatshele  won bronze  in three minutes 52,45sec.

Zimbabwe grabbed bronze in the men’s 4x400m relay in a time of three minutes 14, 90sec after Botswana won gold in three minutes 08,11sec with Zambia winning silver in three minutes 13,57sec.

The women’s 4x400m relay team claimed bronze in four
minutes 03,96sec. Botswana was first in three minutes 47,01sec with Namibia getting silver in three minutes 55,44sec.