Bindura University of Science Education (BUSE) National Sports Academy recently honoured its outstanding athletes for the past year when it held the Vice Chancellor’s Recognition of Achievements by Talentees Awards ceremony in Harare.
The awards were held at the Zimbabwe Olympic Committee headquarters in Belvedere. Ten athletes from athletics, most of whom were part of Team Zimbabwe to the African Union Sports Council Region Five Under-20 Youth Games in Botswana last year received certificates of excellence.
Athletics contributed several medals at the games and some of the athletes are attached at the academy based at BUSE, including gold medallists Norman Mukwada, who came out tops in 400m hurdles and 110m hurdles. He also set a new national record for juniors in 400m hurdles with a time of 50.79seconds.
Dorothy Kavhumbura also picked gold in triple jump as well as James Mutenje in javelin.
The likes of Brian Ndlovu, sprinter Dickson Kapandura and the 4x100m relay team got silver while Vanessa Matimbe and the 4x400m relay team got bronze.
Ndlovu set a new youth national record of 2,10m in high jump. The relay teams were made up of Kapandura, Ndlovu, Mukhokeli Sibanda and Mukwada. Also recognised for their efforts were Maryjoy Mudyiravanji and Nyasha Mutsetse following their participation at the Africa Senior Championships last year in Nigeria as well as Privilege Chikara.
Chikara represented the country at the African Youth Games in Algeria and went on to compete at the Youth Olympic Games in Argentina in 1 500m.
Speaking at the function, the Vice Chancellor Professor Eddie Mwenje said 2018 was a fruitful year for the academy.
“The year 2018 was indeed a year of great impact for the National Sports Academy and we can reflect on our achievements with great pride. We can look forward with great confidence on the role that the National Sports Academy can play in building a brighter future for sports in partnership with key stakeholders,” said Professor Mwenje.
With the academy also setting up a colours committee where athletes will be awarded a colours blazer when they progress to the next stage, the 10 athletes also received blue blazers, which is the silver entry point.
The university was given the mandate to house the National Sports Academy by Government in 2006.
The academy is a converging centre for sporting activities, which include athletics, field, aquatic and indoor games.
It’s set to address challenges such as infusing a scientific approach to sport programs, increasing the numbers of Zimbabwe athletes at major international competitions and podium performances as those events. When fully developed, it is expected to host national and international events as well as prepare sport persons to compete in these and other competitions.
President Mnangagwa who is the academy’s patron and was yesterday represented by his daughter, Chido.
The academy’s board chairperson Anna Mguni encouraged the athletes to aim for qualification in upcoming competitions.
“We encourage you to pursue qualification for upcoming regional, continental and international events; on the horizon are the African Games in August, 2019 to be held in Morocco and ultimately the Summer Olympics in July 2020 in Tokyo. The National Sports Academy remains committed to providing support to realise the dreams of the athletes,” said Mguni.