Unbelievable - here’s an­other Ngoni Makusha

The Sunday Mail (Zimbabwe) - - SPORT - Ti­nashe Kusema

NGONI Makusha needs lit­tle in­tro­duc­tion.

A mem­ber of golden gen­er­a­tion of Zim­babwe ath­let­ics Gabriel Mvumvure, Brian Dzin­gai and Brian Mada in the early 2000s - much was ex­pected of the 30-yearold longjump and short-dis­tance star.

Makusha rose to promi­nence at the 2008 Bei­jing Olympics he came within a of col­lect­ing Zim­babwe’s first in track and field in the longjump at qua­dren­nial games.

Later, the Chi­tung­wiza-born and 200m sprinter the along­side where cen­time­ter medal events the 100 mi­grated to the United States, set­ting Florida State Univer­sity alight with his speed as he won the Bow­er­man Award, as well as longjump bronze at the 2011 IAAF World Ath­let­ics Cham­pi­onship in South Korea. Un­for­tu­nately a rap­tured Achilles dur­ing a rou­tine train­ing ses­sion in 2012 stalled his promis­ing ca­reer as he would miss both the Lon­don and Rio Games. So is that end of Ngoni Makusha? Well, not ex­actly. Be­lieve it or not, but there is an­other young and promis­ing ath­lete who who is also called Ngoni Makusha. The 23-year-old Makusha chuck­les at the co­in­ci­dence, not­ing how many peo­ple think he is the older Makusha when­ever his name is men­tioned. “It’s funny ... al­ready I have re­ceived two or three calls from jour­nal­ists think­ing I am the other Ngoni. I am now used to it,” he says. “We are iden­ti­cal in every way and peo­ple often mis­take me for him. We look alike, run sim­i­lar races, both come from Chi­tung­wiza and it doesn’t re­ally help mat­ters that we have the same name and sur­name. Hope­fully, I can live up to the ex­pec­ta­tions and stan­dards he has set.” Born on June 29, 1994, Ngoni Methukela Makusha was bred in the town of Chi­tung­wiza - where the older Makusha also hails from.

The sec­ond-born in a fam­ily of three, the son of Obias and Rose­lyn Makusha started ath­let­ics when he was eight at Fungi­sai Pri­mary School, mainly con­cen­trat­ing in sprints.

“I have al­ways been fast and it seemed al­most a fore­gone con­clu­sion that I would ex­cel in the 100 ad 200m races.

I did try longjump and cross coun­try, but it didn’t re­ally go hand and hand with my speed,” he says.

The younger Makusha only turned pro­fes­sional last year but al­ready has big dreams of rep­re­sent­ing Zim­babwe on the grand­est stage of them all - the Olympic Games.

“I started tak­ing the whole run­ning thing se­ri­ously last year. I posted my time on my Face­book ac­count and Ngoni (Makusha) liked my post and later reached out to me via a mes­sage cu­ri­ous as to who I ac­tu­ally was.

“We spoke at length, found out we had no re­la­tions but have been good friends since.

He gave me some sound ad­vice as to how I can train, im­prove my speed and deal with chal­lenges and in­juries that will come my way in this pro­fes­sion.

Now my dream is to qual­ify for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo and hope­fully run along­side him,” he re­veals. The younger Makusha was one of the ath­let­ics who rep­re­sented Zim­babwe at last week­end’s Con­fed­er­a­tion of African Ath­let­ics South­ern Re­gion (se­niors) Cham­pi­onships at the Na­tional Sports Sta­dium in Harare. While he missed out on a podium fin­ish, Makusha clocked a per­sonal best of 10,02s in the 100m, bow­ing out in the semi-fi­nals. “I was nurs­ing an Achilles in­jury and wasn’t re­ally ex­pect­ing to win a medal. It ended up be­ing a good out­ing as I fin­ished with a per­sonal best time of 10.02 sec­onds in the 100me­ters. “Now, I can add iden­ti­cal in­jury to the list of sim­i­lar­i­ties that ex­ist be­tween he says me and Ngoni,” with a laugh.

Ngoni Makusha (Triple Jumper)

Ngoni Makusha (100m and 200m run­ner)

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