Zim gears up for basketball qualifiers

HARARE - Zimbabwe is set to host the All Africa Games and Afro-Basketball qualifying tournament in Bulawayo next month.

The 2014 Afro Basket tournament will bring together teams from countries that include South Africa, Botswana, Zambia, Angola and the host nation.

The tournament is scheduled to run between October 20 to 27.

Basketball Union of Zimbabwe (Buz) secretary general, Joe Mujuru said preparations are at an advanced stage for the colourful tournament.

“We have started having some training camps for our teams in Harare and the next will be in Bulawayo to keep our teams in shape for the upcoming event,” said Mujuru.

“Only two teams will qualify for the Afro Basket and the All Africa Games next year so we should be prepared for our opponents like South Africa for us to qualify. It is advantageous for us to play at home.”

Mujuru said both the Zimbabwe senior men and women's teams will participate at the Afro-Basketball qualifiers.

“We will have both women and men’s teams fighting to secure for a place at next year’s Afro Basket and All Africa Games and we also want to use the event for preparing for the Zone V Games to be held in Bulawayo in December,” he said.

“We really look forward to qualify for these games especially for our ladies who qualified for the Afro-Basket tournament last year and we hope men will also do the same.”

Mujuru said there is need to decentralise the sport in various corners of the country especially to smaller levels and other provinces in order to make the sport grow.

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