BULAWAYO karate association chairperson sensei John Mhangwa yesterday challenged karatekas to show commitment to the sport indicating that lack of seriousness has brought down the sport in the province.
Mhangwa said this after the province failed to produce athletes to take part in the Junior World Championships set for Spain next month.
“As Bulawayo Karate Association we are still left behind as far as this sport is concerned. We have people who lack commitment, that is the reason why we failed to produce athletes to compete in Spain.
“People always say everything is done in Harare, but in this case I beg to differ because we are to blame,” Mhangwa said.
Last Saturday the province hosted the inter-provincial karate tournament which was won by the Midlands at Drill Hall, Bulawayo, and the event saw the participation of few junior athletes, some of them coming with insufficient fighting kit resulting in failure to compete.
However, Mhangwa promised that the association would address all the problems very soon and engage in karate squad training with other neighbouring centres particularly Tsholotsho so that they could recruit more junior karatekas.
“We want to rectify this mistake, so we are going to be conducting squared trainings,” he said.
Sensei Greatman Sibanda the public relations officer of the association differed, saying karate had been quite for a long time in the province due to economic meltdown.
“The failure to produce athletes to compete in the junior world championships is attributed to economic meltdown in the past years.
“We had never been active like other provinces like Harare until last year when the National Karate Association held a provincial meeting in Kwekwe to encourage provinces to revamp the sport,” Sibanda said.
Sibanda said the province lost instructors who had passion for karate who left the country for greener pastures during the period of severe economic meltdown.
“We have a lot of instructors who left the country during the period of economic meltdown, so we are still trying to fill in those gaps,” he said.
The Zimbabwe karate team will leave the country month end for juniors world karate championships to be played in Spain from November 1-11.