BY SPORTS REPORTER
THE Zimbabwe table tennis team has regrouped for the final preparation for the 2019 African Union Sport Council (AUSC) Region 5 Table Tennis Championship set for Lesotho next week.
The Region 5 Games will run from December 4 to 11 at Lehakoe Recreational Centre in Maseru and will be used as the World Championship qualifiers.
Zimbabwe has been in preparatory mode for the past couple of months beginning with the Chinese Ambassador Cup at Harare International School which was held at the end of September.
Last weekend, Zimbabwe competed at the Zambia edition of the Chinese Ambassador Cup that featured a number of countries, including Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi and Zambia.
The team regrouped at Prince Edward on Thursday and is set to play the final preparatory match against the Chinese community living in Zimbabwe today.
“We regrouped for training at Prince Edward School on Thursday as we wind up preparations for the Region 5 Games. We are scheduled to play the Chinese team Golden Peacock in Harare on Saturday,” Nelson Madzokere, the Zimbabwe Table Tennis Union national technical director, said.
“We have been training for a while and I feel the team is almost ready for competition at the Region 5 Games. This event will be used as qualifiers for 2020 World Championship, so we need to finish in the medal positions for us to qualify.”
The country’s number one player, Brian Chamboko, who won the men’s event at the Chinese Ambassador Cup, will lead the men’s team, which also includes Tinotenda Fambira, Tatenda Mumvuma, Lydale Chafurama and Nick Jani.
Anesu Siringwani is Zimbabwe’s top player in the women’s team, alongside Ashley Dhlamini, Vimbai Makuvaza and Cindy Chinomona.
Madzokere feels that Zimbabwe’s relatively young side has a bright future.
“Table tennis has been growing in Zimbabwe and we are excited to be sending a young side which is hungry for success to Lesotho. Save for Chamboko, who is the oldest player in the team, our teams are made up of university and high school students which speaks to a bright future for our table tennis,” he said.
Men: Brian Chamboko, Tinotenda Fambira, Tatenda Mumvuma, Lydale Chafuruma, Janhi
Coach: Takudzwa Mudonhi
Women: Anesu Siringwani, Ashley Dhlamini, Cindy Chinomona, Vimbai Makuvaza
Coach: Blessings Mathe