Zim debate team eyes world title

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BY DARLINGTON MWASHITA
WHILE memories of Zimbabwe High School Moot Court team’s crowing as world champions are still fresh, another national schools team is aiming high at the global debate stage.

Zimbabwe’s moot court team beat The Netherlands in the European Moot Court Championships finals as the sole African representative early this month in Romania.

In the latest development, Zimbabwe national debate team (ZNDT) will have their African Champions status put to test when they represent the country at this year’s edition of the World Schools Debating Championships.

The World Schools Debating Championships contest is scheduled for August 7 to August 18 in The Netherlands.

To book the world ticket, the six member ZNDT team flew the country’s flag high early this year and emerged African Schools Debate Championships.

For their victory, the ZNDT retained the African title for the second time, having also won it last year.

The national team is making progress in their preparations ahead of the forthcoming assignment.

“We have had a lot of practice and now ready to represent the country in the world debate championships set for The Netherlands from August 7 to 18,” ZNDT head coach, Maison Maphosa told NewsDay Life & Style.

“The students are highly talented, they have continuously proven to be the best on the continent, honestly this makes me very proud and eager to see what they will do at the world championships.”

The ZNDT members are drawn from six different provinces of the country’s 10 provinces.

“Our national team members are Nokutenda Chimbetete from Harare, Menzimuhle Ncube from Bulawayo, Nyasha Mazarura from Masvingo, Munesushe Mushosho from Mashonaland East, Joseph Matanda from Manicaland and Sharon Marangwanda from Midlands,” he said.

“I have always told the team to be hungry for success. We have the advantage of being underdogs and now we just need to stay motivated and surprise the always dominating teams like Canada and Hong Kong.”

Maphosa said their goal was to make debate accessible and enjoyable.

“In the next few years, ZNDT will not only be world’s dominating team, but nationally institutionalised just like we do with soccer. We have a developing team, Zimbabwe Development Squad that allows new debaters who want to be part of the national team in the coming years to join in and have a massive practice with the team and learn from the best coaches,” he added.

Maphosa, who has been the ZNDT head coach for three years, is assisted by coaches Thembani Khumalo and Anele Tshuma.

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