NATIONAL head coach field events Aaron Whyte says they are hoping to take their field events competitions to various provinces after the success of the National Field Events Championships at the National Sports Stadium over the weekend.
Ellina Mhlanga Senior Sports Reporter
The competition attracted more than 100 athletes from clubs and schools. They competed in long jump, triple jump, high jump, javelin, shot put and discus.
Most of the athletes that represented the country at the Confederation of African Athletics Under-18 and Under-20 Championships in Zambia attended the event.
Samuel Dauti, Prosper Zimbango, Naomi Musindo, Ryan Dube and Kimberly Kachambwa, who represented the country at the continental meet took part in the event.
Dauti emerged tops in the Boys Under-18 high jump while Zimbango dominated the Boys Under-18 shot put and discus.
Kachambwa had a positive outing in the Girls Under-18 claiming the top spots in both shot put and discus.
The competition was facilitated by the National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe to promote awareness on field events and come up with a database for field events athletes across the country.
Whyte said the turnout was encouraging and they want to take the event to different provinces.
“We are happy, actually the numbers took us by surprise…The quality of competition is commendable looking at where we are in the year now considering that most of the kids and athletes have just started their pre-competition season, so they are not yet fully polished.
“And moving from here, we are going to come up with a national database and we are going to work with the kids who came here, (and) performed.
“We are going to get in touch with their coaches because we want to organise more of these events, starting from district to provincial level and then national level. And then we are going to organise camps.
“We have got some competitions coming up next year, especially for seniors and Under-20s, we are going to have a number of camps before January preparations,” said Whyte.
Whyte said they noticed that most of their medals were coming from field events and believes with more support the country has the potential to do better.
Zimbango said such competitions will help them improve.
“In discus I learnt some new techniques from other coaches. Coaches were sharing ideas and it actually helps with performance because I am hearing different views from the other coaches.
“It helps me improve and excel in my performance since next year there is going to be World Under-20 Championships.
“Maybe by the time we will be having these competitions I will be in form and qualify for the World Championships, for any competition that is going to happen next year,” said Zimbango.
University of Zimbabwe’s Marilyn Zhova, who participated in senior women long jump shared the same sentiments.
“It helps to keep us training and push us to continue in the sport, so it’s good to have more such competitions so that we work hard…We mostly focused on track events only because we were not serious about field events since there wasn’t much competition,” said Zhova.
Ryan Dube, who competed in triple jump and long jump said the competition was a platform to prepare for the forthcoming new season.
“Considering that this is almost off-season for a lot of people, it is quite a good starter for field championships. Not much competition to say but to keep us going. I think it was a good thing that they thought of, to have field championships.”
The competition attracted more than 100 athletes from clubs and schools.