THE Basketball Union of Zimbabwe (BUZ) is set to start fundraising for the Afro-Basketball and All-Africa Games qualifiers with the hope of raising about $50 000 for the tournament scheduled for Bulawayo on February 21 to 28 at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair.
BUZ have decided to hold the games in Bulawayo after the installation of new equipment which was used for the Youth Games early this month.
Qualifiers had earlier been pencilled for November 20 to 27 at the Trade Fair, but because of the renovations that were taking place at the venue they had to be postponed.
Joe Mujuru, the BUZ secretary-general said they would be setting up a management committee that will work on the fundraising.
“We started with an awareness campaign for the games in Harare and we will be setting dates for the same in Bulawayo. We want to start fundraising for the games which will be held in Bulawayo. We have decided that the games be played in Bulawayo, but we would like the community to buy into this event,” he said.
Some of the countries expected to take part in the qualifiers are South Africa, Angola, Botswana and Zambia.
“As part of the fundraising campaign we are planning dinners in Bulawayo and Harare. We are trying to reach out to the community to assist us in raising the money needed for the qualifiers,”Mujuru said.
Team Zimbabwe has already started preparations for the qualifiers and will move to Bulawayo for the final camp towards the end of January.
The women’s team is coached by Laddie Munetsi and will be assisted by Under-20 women’s coach Sam Mutsvanga while the men’s side will be under Chewie Gilbert with former national basketball and rugby team player Emmanuel Mukandi assisting.
“We want to take advantage of the hype that was created during the Region 5 Youth Games when we host the qualifiers. Bulawayo should come out and support. The local organising committee (for the Region 5 Under-20 Youth Games) has supported us through letting us use their equipment. We are still in talks with the ministry (Sport, Arts and Culture) on how they would assist us,” Mujuru said.