Aussie cricket legends in Zimbabwe Mr Lovemore Nyatsine

Sports Writer 

AUSTRALIAN cricket legends John Buchanan and Paul Wilson are in Zimbabwe conducting coaching clinics with students from different backgrounds including those from disadvantaged communities.

The duo was brought into the country by Grassroots Cricket Zimbabwe, a charitable organisation that uses the power of cricket to help transform young lives among Zimbabwe’s vulnerable communities by providing coaching, mentorship, life skills and essential support.

Buchanan, who guided the Australian Men’s Cricket Team to great success from 1999 to 2007 and Wilson, an Australian cricket umpire and former national cricketer, have so far conducted high-performance camps at Glen View and Prince Edward Schools in Harare and at Peterhouse College in Marondera.

The cricket legends will next week conduct coaching clinics in Bulawayo.

Speaking at a Grassroots Cricket fundraising breakfast held in Harare last week, Buchanan said students and businesses need to cultivate five pillars of success in life; namely vision, leadership culture, learning environment, talent and a success mindset in order for them to get to the top and remain there.

“For your team or your business to succeed over the long-term, for it to be able to cope with the highs and the lows that are thrown at it every working day, these five pillars are an excellent framework from which to build sustainable success,” he said.

The event, which was well-attended by about 100 people representing several corporates – including Econet Wireless Zimbabwe, the Nyaradzo Group, Zimbabwe Cricket, and the Australian Embassy, among others – sought to raise funds for grassroots cricket in Zimbabwe.

Speaking at the same occasion, Grassroots Cricket Zimbabwe president Kush Sira said his organisation was not only about developing star cricketers that will one day play for Zimbabwe but seeks to make the sport accessible to all children regardless of their background.

“In this regard, we are thrilled to be working with Econet Wireless to make cricket more accessible to all children across Zimbabwe. With their support, and that of similar sponsors, I believe we can help create a brighter future for thousands of young people,” he said.

Sira said cricket was not one of the most accessible of sports as players need a lot of equipment and  understanding all the rules can be a barrier to underprivileged children.

“But with the help of our sponsors, and the great effort of all our coaches, we have been able to reach over 2 000 children over the last three years through our continued coaching clinics, cricket tournaments, trips to Harare Sports Club to watch the Zimbabwe Cricket team and donations of over 100 cricket bats, and countless pads, gloves, balls and shirts.”

A senior Econet executive, Lovemore Nyatsine commended Grassroots Cricket for the work it is doing to develop the sport among different communities.

“We believe that everyone deserves the opportunity to participate in sport regardless of their background or circumstances,” Nyatsine said, noting that sport does not only promote social belonging among the underprivileged but also builds character and discipline within communities.

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