ZIMBABWE National Youth Games 2013 hosts Bulawayo are looking forward to a good show at this year’s annual games which will be held throughout next week at various venues in the city.All the country’s 10 provinces are expected to send full contingent of teams to the games that have been dominated by Harare since inception.
Last year, Bulawayo province came second to Harare after getting a single gold medal but the province said they have since identified the sport code that made them fail to land the top spot and have since rectified that.
“We know what made us come short of position one but we have since worked on that and I promise you, this time we are well on course,” said the assistant general manager technical, Adam Joelson.
He said the province took 253 athletes into camp and said they were impressed with the good response they received from everybody involved when they announced their team and camping dates.
Team Bulawayo has been camping at Eveline High School from Thursday last week and will stay there until checking out time when athletes go to the Games’ allocated accommodation places on Saturday.
Joelson said their other medal hopeful discipline will be boxing where they were looking at not less than eight gold medals.
“On the overall picture we do not have any set targets in terms of the number of medals but we remain confident that we shall do well, especially that we are home,” he said.
Assistant general manager responsible for administration Njabulo Bango said so far their camping conditions have been excellent with both athletes and technical staff exhibiting good behaviour.
“So far I am yet to receive any complaints about bad behaviour from both the athletes and administrators, which is really pleasing,” said Bango.
Meanwhile, as part of the preparations for the games, Bulawayo and Matabeleland North handball teams held a practice match at Khumalo Hockey Stadium while the Matabeleland North girls’ soccer team played against Cowdray Park at Luveve High School grounds.
One of the Bulawayo handball team coaches, Sibulisiswe Mpofu who has been with Team Bulawayo since the inception of the games, is hopeful that her girls team will do better than their third place finish at the 2012 Games in Bindura.
“It looks promising but we will continue working hard in order to improve on our show from last year,” she said.
Her team lost in the semi-finals to Matabeleland South who went on to clinch gold.
Bulawayo girls’ handball team is in Group A with Mashonaland East, Mashonaland West, Midlands and Masvingo while defending champions Matabeleland South are in Group B with Matabeleland North, Mashonaland Central, Manicaland and Harare.
In another development, the local organising committee has advised members of the media and other service providers to the games to go to the website www.zscorea2z.com <http://www.zscorea2z.com> for accreditation.
“They can also visit our command centre at the Bulawayo Polytechnic’s School of Hospitality for assistance,” said the SRC provincial coordinator Sam Dzvimbu.
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