THE Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) was impressed by the performance of the Zimbabwe team that returned this week from the Zone Six Youth Games in Maputo, Mozambique.
Speaking to IndependentSport upon arrival from Mozambique, SRC director general Elias Musangeya attributed the team’s success to the SRC’s strategy of focusing on youth development which was kick-started by the launch of the National Youth Games last year.
“We showed that there is abundant talent in Zimbabwe that just needs nurturing. Events such as these national and regional youth games get us prepared for the bigger occasions such as the All Africa Games and the Olympics,” he said.
The Zimbabwe team, which scooped a total of 40 medals, came second after South Africa on the medals’ table out of 13 southern African countries.
Musangeya also revealed that the commission will be putting aside a budget of over $1 billion for this year’s National Games to be held in Masvingo.
Meanwhile, the national under 20 soccer team that won a silver medal at the games will soon start preparations for the World Youth Championships to be played in Benin next year.
Team manager Simon Makaza said the team will not be disbanded but a few players will be added to strengthen the side.
Zimbabwe will play Tanzania in a two-legged preliminary round match next month after which they will play either South Africa or Lesotho if they win.