Mama euphoria grips Community Cup

HARARE – Zimbabwean-raised flanker Marco Mama caused a standstill at the Mashonaland East Old Mutual Intercommunity Cup at Zengeza 1 High School over the weekend.

The versatile back-rower who plays for Aviva Premiership side Worcester Warriors is in the country during the off season and was guest of honour at the Old Mutual Community Cup which seeks to harness Zimbabwe’s rugby talent residing in high density areas.

While he may not have wanted to be the star attraction, his aura sent the young rugby players into festivity as they jostled for pictures with the Warriors flanker.

He told the young rugby players how he had played in Zimbabwe and later had an opportunity to go to England from where he furthered his career.

“There is so much talent and I hope one day you guys can get as far as I have with rugby,” Mama said.

The former Zimbabwe rugby Under-20 captain, who qualifies to play international rugby for Zimbabwe, England and Nigeria, officiated the last match of the Community Cup as Seke and Kadoma U18s battled for honours.

Seke emerged runaway winners in that encounter, downing Kadoma 30-5.

Kyros Sports director of the athletics division Nyasha Muchochomi was in awe of Mama’s humility.

“The rugby starlets received Worcester Warriors playing and training kit, Bristol Lions playing kit, England national team training kit and jerseys belonging to World Rugby stars like Ben Teo,” Muchochomi said.

“Marco also gave away all his England playing kit. The 250 boys and girls were inspired by generosity and how down to earth Marco was.

“Blessing Moyo from Zengeza fractured his collar bone during a match and Marco was quick to give him a Ben Teo jersey and cash for medical expenses as he was being rushed to hospital by ambulance. This turned pain into a smile for 17-year-old Blessing.”

The Old Mutual development program has over 6 000 teenagers from non-rugby tradition playing communities now accessing the sport.

An average of 20 players a year across the program receive scholarships into top rugby schools, a platform which acts as a conveyer belt for the some of the talented rugby starlets to make it into the national age group teams.

“Marco was impressed with the Old Mutual program and is eager to keep supporting it through appearances, donating kit and looking for rugby scholarships for the talent he saw on display,” Muchochomi said.

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