Mbulawa set to go to Australia
NATIONAL bowling champion Elliah Mbulawa will become the first black Zimbabwean to represent the country at the World Bowling Singles Championships to be held in Australia next year.
Mbulawa shrugged off stiff competition from 30 other bowlers from around the country vying for the national crown in Kadoma last week.
“I am so nervous because I think this is a huge responsibility for me. I will not be representing myself or my club, but the whole country will be looking to me to make them proud. I know it won’t be easy, as I will be facing more experienced players from across the globe,” said an elated Mbulawa.
“Representing the province was not an easy task considering that this was my first national competition. Some guys from Bulawayo pulled out of the competition at the last minute, so I had to face the challenge on my own. This gave me a little fright, but through support from my coach and Good Hope Country Club, I managed to pull through.”
Mbulawa, who was also the 2012 and 2013 Bulawayo Club champion, said he did not think the sport would bring him this far.
“It all started when I was working at Bulawayo Bowling Club and when no one was around I would take the opportunity to play on my own. By then I was so curious about how the game was played, so I kept on practising until I became good.
“One day Don Rigby (his coach) saw me playing then he asked me if I could play in other competitions. I told him that I was not ready, so I asked him to let me play in the social competitions to gain experience and meet other players. In my first competition, I became club champion for two consecutive years and that really encouraged me.
“It’s all hard work and having passion for the sport. Ever since I started, I never stopped and pushed myself harder to become successful until I came this far.
“I also hope that by winning the national competition it will encourage other black Zimbabweans to take up the game, as it’s not a white man’s sport,” he said. — @ khumzallen.