The Zimbabwe Aquatic Union (ZAU) plans to revive diving, which has, over the years, been hard hit by migration of athletes and retirements, while its administration has ceased to function due to lack of funding.
By Freeman Makopa
ZAU president Mary Kloppers yesterday said the union would be working with schools in trying to revive the sport.
“CANA (African Swimming Confederation) have nominated me on to the FINA (International Swimming Federation) technical diving committee. I will be working with the schools to revive the sport and we will start conducting Learn to Dive courses hand in hand with Learn to Swim courses so that we can train teachers and coaches to access as many people as possible,” she told NewsDay Sport.
Kloppers bemoaned lack of funding for the sport, which she believes has a huge capacity of earning the country success at international level.
“Some schools have been trying, but not getting it off the ground. The last time there was a schools’ competition was probably 10 years ago. Lack of coaches is the problem as well as equipment. If this sport is well-funded, it has the capacity to put our country on the map,” she said.
Zimbabwe used to be rated among the top diving nations in the world and managed to send divers to the Olympics despite the tough competition for qualification spots.
Evan Stewart is one of the most successful divers Zimbabwe has produced, having won a gold medal at the World Championships in 1994, while he also claimed three medals at the Commonwealth Games. He participated at three editions of the Olympics.