- Zim Taekwondo rep funds own trip to Japan for African olympics qualifiers
- Maringehosi withdraws in round one due to knee injury
THE Zimbabwe Taekwondo Federation sent only one athlete, Lazarus Maringehosi, to Morocco, Rabat, for the African Taekwondo Olympic Qualifiers which were held between February 20 and 24.
If Maringehosi had qualified in Morocco, he would have made it into the 58kg category Taekwondo Olympics Championships 2020, set for Japan.
The Zimbabwean athlete, however, lost to one S Fofana from Mali.
In an interview with Zim Morning Post this week, Maringehosi said he fought with a winning mind but was withdrawn only after a few seconds into the first round due to a knee injury.
“When I fought with Fofana, I had a winning mind.
“I, however, suffered a knee injury during the first round,” Maringehosi said.
“I wanted to represent my country, and all my efforts were fruitless, including the struggle I went through to go to Morocco,” he said.
Maringehosi did not get any sponsorship from the Zimbabwe Taekwondo Federation, having funded his own trip to the African Taekwondo Olympic Qualifiers in Morocco last month.
“It was unfortunate for me, but things should have gone in our favour if my coach had accompanied me, but he failed to fund himself for the trip to Morocco,” Maringehosi said.
“I was alone in this big game, and did not have any form of support from my country, which also contributed to my loss,” he added.
The Zimbabwe Taekwondo Federation has also been invited to compete in the 2020 African Krogul Senior Championships set for between May 29 and 30 in Egypt.
“I hope the country will this time assist our team to go and compete in the games, and I believe our team has the capacity to bring medals back home,” Maringehosi said.
The Zimbabwe National Taekwondo Federation president Benson Zvizvai was not available for comment at the time of writing.
Meanwhile, the lack of funding shows that the Sports ministry is neglecting the discipline.