Zim athletes return to IAAF Indoor stage

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The National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe (NAAZ) yesterday named a four-member team for the forthcoming IAAF World Indoor Championships set for the Atakoy Athletics Arena in Istanbul, Turkey, from March 9-11.

The deadline for national associations to enter their teams is February 27. The team comprises of the United States-based duo of long jumper Ngonidzashe Makusha and sprinter Gabriel Mvumvure, Kwekwe-based sprinter Francis Zimwara and female middle-distance runner Faithful Goremusandu.

Joseph Mungwari, the NAAZ president, told NewsDay Sport the association had resolved to send athletes to the World Indoors after a lengthy absence from the competition.

In recent years we have not sent athletes to the World Indoor Championships partly because of lack of funding and also because our athletes are not exposed to indoor facilities.

However, after realising the need to make sure that our athletes get adequate preparation ahead of the crucial qualifying phase for Olympics, we made a commitment to send a team of four athletes to Turkey.

We are going to partly fund the teams participation and also receive support from the Zimbabwe Olympic Committee, said Mungwari.

Judging by his performance at the IAAF World Championships (outdoor) in South Korea where he won a bronze medal, Makusha will be the countrys brightest prospect in Turkey. In a telephone interview with NewsDay Sport from his base in Florida in the US, Makusha, still awaiting confirmation from NAAZ on his participation, said he was eyeing a solid performance in Turkey.

The World Indoor Championships will definitely be a big competition and its something that Im looking forward to ahead of the London Olympic Games.

I have been training hard and Im fit and ready to go, he said.Voluptiures molorpor millenim