Innocent Kurira, Sports Reporter
THE Zimbabwe national table tennis team has stepped up preparations for the African Union Sports Council Region Five Games pencilled for Gaborone in Botswana at the end of this month.
The event will take place from January 25 to 29 at Botho University Hall. The regional competition will see 13 Southern African countries battle for supremacy and these include
Swaziland, South Africa, Zambia, Mozambique, Angola, Namibia, Malawi and the hosts Botswana.
Both men and women teams will be competing at the tournament for singles, doubles and mixed catergories.
Zimbabwe Table Tennis Union (ZTTU) national technical director Noah Ferenando is optimistic the team will hold their own against some of the best players in the region.
“We have rolled out a programme for our selected team that was named early this week. They started training last month at our various training centres around the country.
“For physical fitness training, we played an international friendly with the Chinese that actually pushed our players quite hard and acted as a pivotal pre-event preparation and medium selection of our players for the Games. We are very confident of doing well in Botswana.We have been focusing on development and this is going to be our first regional tournament.
“We are running around to mobilise the required funding for the tournament but we are confident that everything will fall into place,” Ferenando said.
The national side will be led by Takudzwa Mudoni as the head coach.
The men’s team is made up of Vikram Singh, Brain Chamboko, Takunda Mudzingama, Tinashe Duri, Mlungisi Moyo and Raphael Gotipo while the women’s team has Isheunesu Siringanwani, Vongai Zhuwakim, Ashley Dhlamini, Cindy Chinomonaj, Ncube Princess and Vimbai Makuvaza who is the coach’s reserve player.