Zim hopeful of Tokyo 2020 Olympics

ZIMBABWE is hopeful they will send a strong delegation to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in Japan.

Speaking at the Olympics and Paralympics promotion event organised by the Japanese embassy, director of Sports in the ministry of Sports Euginia Chidhakwa said her boss Sports minister Kirsty Coventry is working tirelessly to bolster prospects of local athletes qualifying for Tokyo 2020.

“As Zimbabwe, we are hopeful to send a huge team to these games taking into consideration that honourable…Conventry is a member of both International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Tokyo 2020 Coordinating Committee,” Chidhakwa said.
The Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games are pencilled to take place from July 24 to August 9 in Japan.

A total of 33 sports disciplines will feature in the Olympics including four new disciplines — surfing, sports climbing, karate and skateboarding.

Paralympics will have 22 disciplines including two new ones — badminton and taekwondo.
Zimbabwe Paralympics Committee president Michael Bulagango said preparations for the games started in 2012 and have since intensified.

“We have been in partnership with Japan and they have been working with our athletes,” Bulagango said.
“We are preparing thoroughly, in August last year we sent two athletes to Dubai and we will be sending athletes in judo, athletics, wheelchair basketball, tennis...and if they qualify we will be able to go to the 2020 Olympics.”

Japanese ambassador to Zimbabwe Toshiyuki Iwado said his country is excited about the two events and is fully prepared for the global showpiece together with the 2019 Rugby World Cup.
“We are very lucky to host the Olympics for the second time since 1964. 

“The 1964 games were the first to be held in Asia and the first live broadcast on television... and we are excited to see the games next year,” Iwado said.

Zimbabwe Olympic Committee (Zoc) vice-president Thabani Gonye said his team has been mesmerised by the facilities in Tokyo.

“We have been there to see the state of preparedness and I can tell you that Japan is ready,” Gonye said.

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