Getting dirty for cancer

HARARE - Zimbabwean athletes, sports administrators and ordinary people at the weekend gave cancer patients another chance to fight the scourge by taking part in the Husqvarna Mud Run in Harare.

Close to a thousand people took part in the two-kilometre run at Innovate High Performance Centre in Harare with proceeds going to the Cancer Association of Zimbabwe.

Children as young as four to adults over 50 got down and dirty by taking part in the obstacle course mud run whose proceeds also went to Kidz Can Zimbabwe.

“The message to people is that cancer is a real issue,” event organiser Grant Mitchell told the Daily News yesterday.

“You need to get checked. You need to know where you stand. It can happen to anyone and you need to be aware of the institutions and people that can help you.

“The objective is to provide people from all walks of life, young and old, a chance to experience not only the Zimbabwean outdoors but a chance to fight cancer.”

Renowned judo instructor, referee and judge Debie Jeans, who recently recovered from breast cancer, took an emotional journey down memory lane when she spoke of her experiences and how she emerged victorious.

Another highlight of the event was the Shavathon were people made a stand against breast cancer by shaving their heads with the proceeds going to the Pinc Project.

Karen Tselentis and Laurin Mariani were two of the ladies who went bald to raise public awareness and funding.

Tselentis was well supported by her partner, former Zimbabwe cricketer Greg Lamb, who also had his hair cut.

“It's going to be very emotional for two ladies to go bald but if we can change the life of even one cancer patient then we have succeeded,” Tselentis said before the Shavathon.

Amongst the notable athletes that competed were the Zimbabwe Olympian Micheen Thornycroft and ex-Zimbabwe cricketer Guy Whittall.

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