16 February 2013

Zimbabwe: Top Runners Meet in Redcliff

TOP middle and distance runners from around the country are set to converge in Redcliff today for the Inter-Provincial Cross Country Championship at Allan Lowry Golf Club. National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe secretary-general, Cynthia Phiri, said she is expecting all the 10 provinces to field teams at the selection event.

"We are holding an inter-provincial championship at Allan Lowry Golf Club and I am sure all the provinces will come. Everything is set for the competition and I have been communicating to all the provincial boards' chairperson who confirmed that they will be coming. The track should be in perfect conditions because it was used last week by the Midlands Athletics Board for their selection event," said Phiri.

Phiri said NAAZ will be using the competition in Redcliff today to select a national cross-country team.

"At the end of the day, we should come up with a national team.

"We are hoping to field a national team at the Southern Regional Championships in Lesotho on February 23 and this is the platform to pick the squad.

"I think we should be going to Lesotho by road and we have to assemble the best possible team," said Phiri.

During the race on the dirt track today, the senior men will compete over 12km while the senior women and the junior men race over an 8km circuit.

The junior women's race is over 6km and each province is expected to field a maximum of six athletes per each category, with four of athletes scoring points for the team.

Harare Province, who missed the event last year after failing to travel, are expected to announce their presence with a bang as they field a formidable team led by veteran Kelvin Pangiso who won the HAB selection event at Prince Edward last week.

Pangiso, from the Zimbabwe Prison Services Club, stopped the clock in 24 minutes 04.30seconds ahead of Colleen Makaza and Adrain Dube who are all expected to form part of the Harare team.

HAB secretary, Silas Muringani, is upbeat on their chances of emerging the overall winners.

"As Harare Province we are sending a full squad and that means we should be having four scoring athletes in each category," said Muringani.

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