NATIONAL youth and juniors athletics coach Briad Nhubu says they are in a difficult situation after their camp in preparation for the World Under-20 Championships qualifiers was called off.
A 10-member team of juniors got into camp on Saturday at Allan Wilson but had to disband following the suspension of sporting activities in this country due to the outbreak of Covid-19.
The qualification period for the world meet expected to take place in August in Kenya is already open.
"Athletes came in on Saturday evening and we were expecting our first training session on Sunday at 9am. But early in the morning we were told sport had been banned.
"It's really a big blow in terms of the athletes. After all the hard work for some time you are expecting to harvest something in terms of performance.
"These athletes were preparing and this camp was a step to polish them up so that they qualify. But unfortunately we have this sudden stoppage of programmes.
"What it means is in terms of training we are affected, you train, prepare and don't compete, you come down to almost zero again, so it's like two, three steps forward and you come back again.
"We are being affected by these situations but in any case there is nothing we can do, it's not by choice, we have to adhere to the instructions to help fight Covid-19," said Nhubu.
The selected athletes were expected to attend a juniors meet that was scheduled for this weekend in Bulawayo.
It would have given the athletes and the coaches a chance to gauge how their progress in a competition set up.