Medal drought hits Zim ath­letes in Rio

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport - Harare Bu­reau

ZIM­BABWE’S hopes for a medal at the on-go­ing 2016 Rio Olympic Games are get­ting slim with each pass­ing day as most of the ath­letes have al­ready bowed out of their com­pe­ti­tions.

The best re­sult the team has had so far is the fi­nals by swim­ming icon Kirsty Coven­try in the 200m fi­nals and rower Micheen Thorny­croft, who reached the B fi­nal in the women’s sin­gles sculls.

Coven­try reached the fi­nals of the 200m back­stroke on Fri­day morn­ing but found the go­ing tough on Satur­day when she came sixth with a time of 2:08.80.

How­ever, for the seven-time Olympic medal­list it was an in­spir­ing ef­fort as she made her fifth Olympic Games ap­pear­ance.

Thorny­croft, com­pet­ing for the sec­ond time at the Olympics, came fifth in the B fi­nal in 7:30.57 and ranked 11 out of 32 ath­letes.

In the men’s sec­tion, An­drew Pee­bles fin­ished first in the men’s sin­gle sculls E fi­nal af­ter fail­ing to make di­rect qual­i­fi­ca­tion into the main fi­nals and he fin­ished 25th over­all.

In ath­let­ics, Gabriel Mvumvure came sev­enth in heat five of the men's 100m event in 10.28sec­onds on Satur­day and failed to go to the semi-fi­nals.

In an in­ter­view with Star FM’s Spencer Banda, Mvumvure ex­pressed dis­ap­point­ment over his per­for­mance as he had hoped for a bet­ter out­ing.

“Th­ese are some of the heart­breaks that comes with the Olympics. The un­for­tu­nate thing is I have to wait four years again for me to be able to get re­venge or any­thing.

“But it was one of those races where I was con­fi­dent although I didn’t have many as races as I wanted to be able to be sharp at this meet. But I mean when you are at the Olympics you are at the Olympics, you can’t cry foul and com­plain about this and that.

“So I was ready, I felt re­ally good with what I was about to do. I wish it was a lit­tle faster but it’s up and gone. When you are around so many peo­ple that are good starters at times you don’t hap­pen to be so ex­cep­tional when­ever you are around them.

“But it was just one of those races. I wish I could have had a chance or an op­por­tu­nity to re-do it again in the semi-fi­nals but it’s just not go­ing to hap­pen,” said Mvumvure.

Mvumvure, how­ever, be­lieves with bet­ter prepa­ra­tions he could have done bet­ter.

“I was in re­ally good shape. And the prob­lem was just be­cause of the funds com­ing in late. For two months I couldn’t go to any races that re­ally hurts the prepa­ra­tion.

“I guess the or­gan­i­sa­tional part should be a lit­tle bit bet­ter as far as sup­port and at times you can’t blame re­ally the Olympic Com­mit­tee be­cause the money they help us with it’s not them, it’s the IOC’s (In­ter­na­tional Olympic Com­mit­tee) money,” said Mvumvure.

While Mvumvure is out, an­other sprinter, Ta­tenda Tsumba will fight for honours in the 200m to­mor­row.

In the women’s marathon yes­ter­day, Ru­tendo Nya­hora set­tled for num­ber 92 in 2hrs 32sec.

Kenya’s Jemima Je­la­gat Sum­gong came first in 2hrs 24mins 4sec, fol­lowed by Ba hrai n’s Eu­nice Jep­kirui Kirwa with a time of 2hrs 24mins 13sec.

Mare Dibaba from Ethiopia pow­ered to third po­si­tion in 2hrs 24misn

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