At least 250 athletes from eight provinces will be fighting for a chance to be part of the 26-member delegation to represent the country at the Abu Dhabi 2019 Special Olympics Games when the 50th anniversary edition of the National Advancement roars to life at the University of Zimbabwe Grounds today.
By Munyaradzi Madzokere
The National Advancement Games is the biggest event on the Special Olympics calendar and this year it provides a platform to select a team for next year’s Summer Games in the Middle East.
Zimbabwe is looking to send a golf team, an athletics team as we as a bocce team to the biggest humanitarian games to be held in March next year.
“We are inviting everyone to come and watch the Special Olympics athletes competing at the University of Zimbabwe Sports Ground. It’s going to be an exciting two days with athletes competing in standing high jump, 100m and 200m dash, long jump, shot put, bocce and seven-a-side football. It’s an exciting time for Special Olympics,” Special Olympics Zimbabwe official Viola Musariri said.
“Special Olympics national advancement games are held to select a team that will participate in Sumer Games in 2019. With 7 000 athletes participating from 165 countries the Special Olympics World Summer Games are the biggest humanitarian event to be held in 2019 and we are excited to be sending a team to be part of the team,” she added
Musariri revealed that the country was denied an opportunity to send a football team to the games.
“We had requested a quota for football but that particular sporting code was oversubscribed, but we are hoping that in the coming years we will be able to send a football team to the games,” she said.
The Special Olympics Zimbabwe team brought home 12 medals from the Los Angeles Games in 2015.