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DESPITE some hiccups in their efforts to field the national teams at the African Games qualifiers starting tomorrow in Lusaka, Zambia, the Zimbabwe Handball Federation have revealed they are back on track and will be competing at the event.
Their teams got into camp early last week with the women’s side training at Harare Girls High School under the guidance of coach Cleopatra Mareverwa.
The men’s team spent most of last week working out at One Commando led by assistant coach Thembani Nkala before they moved to Girls High School yesterday.
They are scheduled to leave for Zambia today ahead of the actual competition starting tomorrow.
The national federation had at some point expressed concern over financial challenges that were threatening the teams’ participation at the regional event.
However, ZHF secretary-general, Edison Chirowodza, said they had managed to source some funds.
“So far as we stand we have secured transport, we are just finalising on accommodation modalities because we have written to the Confederation of Africa and the hosts requesting alternative accommodation, so that we don’t put up at their accommodation because it’s expensive,” said Chirowodza.
The tournament is running until Saturday with South Africa, Zimbabwe and hosts Zambia taking part.
Only the top team in each section — men and women — will qualify for the African Games to be hosted by Morocco from August 23 to September 3 this year.
“What I can say considering our performance from the junior category I think from 2010, we have been doing well in the Challenge Trophy. We have had bronze medals, slightly missing on gold probably because of challenges on preparations.
“But now we are saying this is an opportunity for us to fight for honours at that level. At the same time if we can qualify it will change our fortunes as Zimbabwe handball.
“If we qualify it will show we have the potential and the support that we want may start to come because we would have qualified. Zone Six it’s not a small thing, so that’s how we are valuing this. “And also going to the African Games now not as hosts, to us it will be a greater achievement. We started preparing for this last year,” said Chirowodza.
Source : The Herald