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Kudos to Houghton, cricket squad

Sport
The Takashinga monopoly at the apex of decision-making was rumoured to have been the biggest elephant in the room.

Sapien Sapien THE purple patch being experienced by the Zimbabwe Cricket Team cannot be ignored. The team has managed to prove that with good corporate management, performance is guaranteed.

The Takashinga monopoly at the apex of decision-making was rumoured to have been the biggest elephant in the room.

This monopoly is accused of being behind the southward spiral of the team’s performance besides the fact that talent oozes in Zimbabwe. So dire has been the situation administratively that PriceWaterHouseCoopers had to be roped in to do the management of funds. This shows how having good corporate ethics can become a panacea to growth and development of sport in the country.

Kudos to Dave Houghton. The gaffer has managed to instil confidence in the players and the results have been loud and clear. Since his days at the CFX Academy, Houghton has proven to be adept with talent spotting and player management. Here is hoping that the current form continues right through the T20 World Cup being held in Australia.

The Zimbabwe Chess Team is doing well at the ongoing Chess Olympiad in Chennai, India. The team, snubbed by officials at the Ministry of Sport, Art, Youth and Culture, is defying odds by deciding to put the national flag ahead of petty sabotage attempts by officials whose performance capabilities have reached elasticity limit.

The team left the country without the much-needed government support despite the fact that the SRC had submitted the request to the parent ministry as early as May 9 2022.

The team, left to its own faculties, had to survive on the benevolence of corporate sponsors who are acting within the realms of their corporate social responsibility thrust. They can only do as much.

Sport in Zimbabwe is being decimated by greedy and petty officials managing the affairs at the bureaucracy level.

Many a time the minister stands accused but from revelations emanating from the latest debacle being faced by the Zimbabwe Chess Team, it is evident that some “powerful cartel” of washed-up bureaucrats is hell bent on satisfying their egos at the expense of ensuring that sport develops in Zimbabwe.

The country is witnessing unprecedented increase in drug and substance abuse. The National Anti-Drug Abuse Strategy is moribund whilst structures needed to counter the proliferation of this asymmetric threat are non-existent.

All this is happening amidst evidence of incompetence from officials who are supposed to be managing the affairs of various sports associations within the country.

The absence of amenities and structures to develop grassroot sport amplifies the risk being exposed to the youth in Zimbabwe. The youths are left to their own devices and end up resorting to nefarious activities such as drug abuse simply because some officials are concerned more about their welfare and less about the development of sport. No wonder sportspersons in Zimbabwe are susceptible to bribery and match fixing.

The parent ministry must smell the coffee and put the house in order. The status quo can no longer be allowed to proliferate without being challenged head on. The World Cup in Australia is just by the corner.

It will not be surprising to have officials from the ministry running around to have their visas to Australia sorted when they literally abandoned the Zimbabwe Chess Team that is doing the Lord’s work in Chennai.

Something has to be done to ensure that these greedy officials do not just wait to be on the next plane to a foreign country to enjoy allowances without developing sport in Zimbabwe.

Sapien is a trade and security analyst