10 qualify for World Youth Champs

Ngoni Makusha

EIGHT top Zimbabwe track and field athletes earned personal bests, broke Confederation of School Sport Associations of Southern Africa (Cosassa) Games records and qualified for the International Association of Athletics Federations World Youth Championships which will take place on July 15-19 in Cali, Colombia.


National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe president Tendai Tagara confirmed the eight in addition to two that qualified for the world championships during the AUSC Region 5 Under-20 Youth Games that were held in Bulawayo in December last year.

“We expect more individuals to qualify to represent Zimbabwe in Colombia and so far, 10 athletes have qualified and we now have an outstanding team which keeps growing,” Tagara said.

“Athletes are now in the process of looking for air tickets and those who have qualified put a lot of effort and there is still room for more athletes who want to join the team.

“We are having our inter-provincial competitions on May 30 and 31. We have Botswana, Mozambique and South Africa and they have shown interest to participate. The event is for seniors, but the juniors will use for practice.”

One athlete qualified at the second edition of the African Youth Championships which were held in Mauritius last month, while the other seven qualified during the Cossasa Games held two weeks ago in Lesotho.

Leon Tafirenyika, the 400 metres sprinter, qualified as he came fourth in 49,51 seconds in Mauritius last month.

In Maseru (Lesotho), seven athletes posted qualifying times as they led Team Zimbabwe to the top of the Cossasa medals table with a total of 73 medals, 28 gold, 28 silver and 17 bronze, while Namibia came second with 17 gold,17 silver and 24 bronze.

Nomatter Kafudzarura qualified in the 400 metres in 56,82 seconds, Lovejoy Mapfumo finished the 400m race in 48,87 seconds booking their place for Columbia.

Vimbayi Maisvoreva finished 800m women’s race in two minutes 12,44 seconds, while Enlitha Ncube settled for silver in two minutes 12,52 seconds.

Godwin Moyo finished the 800m race in 1 minute 56,83 seconds.

In the 200-metre race, Tinotenda Matiyenga clocked 21,71 seconds and Abraham Mapiravana finished in 22,00 seconds.

Chenge Mapaya got gold in triple jump in a record 14,92 metres in the Under-17 girls.

The eight athletes will join the already selected two — Enlitha Ncube for 1 500 metres and Hlanguyo Shingirai for 100 metres — who made it during the Region 5 Games.