Ex-Hwange sprinter Simukan­cha dies

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport Starts Here - To­bias Man­doreba in Hwange

FOR­MER Hwange Ath­let­ics sprint­ing sen­sa­tion Se­bas­tian Simukan­cha has died. He was 30. Simukan­cha was found dead next to Nyaradzo Funeral Par­lour in the coal min­ing town in the early hours of Tues­day morn­ing. He was buried in at Mad­um­abisa Ceme­tery yes­ter­day in a mov­ing cer­e­mony at­tended by hun­dreds of peo­ple.

His father Cleopas Simukan­cha said the fam­ily was still in shock over the death of his el­dest son, who was a sports fa­natic.

“I am still shocked over the cir­cum­stances that led to the pass­ing away of my son. There are many the­o­ries and ver­sions we are get­ting, but I leave ev­ery­thing in the hands of God and we hope the po­lice will soon con­clude in­ves­ti­ga­tions into this tragedy that has shaken our fam­ily to the core. My son was an ath­let­ics fa­natic from an early age and it was not a sur­prise to me when he be­came a mem­ber of the Hwange ath­let­ics team, which was pop­u­lar back then in this town,” said the teary father.

Se­bas­tian started his Hwange ath­let­ics ca­reer as a ju­nior ath­lete in 2004 un­der the tute­lage of renowned lo­cal coaches Chris Ml­izane and Juma Phiri af­ter leav­ing an in­deli­ble mark at Sir Humphrey Gibbs Pri­mary and Wankie Sec­ondary School.

He burst into the Hwange se­nior ath­let­ics team in 2007 un­der present Hwange sports officer Kenneth Nyape and fea­tured in the all-con­quer­ing 4X400M re­lay team that fea­tured the likes of for­mer Zim­babwe national team ath­letes Gabriel Chikomo, Themba Ncube, Nel­ton Nde­bele and Tryson Shon­hayi.

Chikomo said he vividly re­mem­bers their days in ac­tion on the track.

“Se­bas­tian was a highly promis­ing ju­nior and I vividly re­mem­ber the big role he played in 2007 in the 4X400M re­lay team when we re­tained our Cham­ber of Mines tro­phy at Peak Mine in Shu­rugwi,” said Chikomo.

Ncube said: “We have lost a great ath­lete here in Hwange. Af­ter the tri­umph in Shu­rugwi, we again saw more glory with him in Gaths Mine the fol­low­ing year. His favourite slo­gan be­fore races was ‘ tiyeni navo mawana’ (let’s take them on my boy).”

Simukan­cha is sur­vived by wife Princess and two daugh­ters.

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