Zim Blade Runner To Compete In Portugal

Nonsikelelo Moyo, Sports Reporter

VICTORIA Falls-based teen blade runner Pride Tadiwanashe Mafira has been presented with a lifetime opportunity to compete against the world’s Paralympians at the International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports Federation World Athletics Championship in Portugal.

The competition will start on November 30 to December 6.

Mafira, a Grade 7 pupil at Chinotimba Primary School won the invite following a sterling performance in the national championships for the disabled sponsored by Nedbank in South Africa held recently.

He scooped gold and silver medals in 100m race and high jump respectively at the recent Nedbank National Championships for the Physically Disabled.

Pride, who is trained by his father Fredrick Mafira is a member of ISability Sports Club, South Africa.

According to the invite, Pride is expected to compete in the 100m athletics, high jump and shot put.

“This letter is to confirm that Pride Tadiwanashe Mafira has been chosen by ISability Sports Club to take part in the upcoming IWASF World Athletics Championships in Portugal from the 30 of November to the 6th of December 2017,” reads part of the invite.

Due to his excellent performance during the 2017 athletics season he has been deemed a prospect for further development and training. This could result in bigger international events for the young athlete such as the IPC World Championships in 2019.

However, Pride’s dream could go up in smoke should he fail to raise $60 000 to cater for airfare, accommodation, food and entry fees.

The promising athlete will be accompanied by his trainer and is appealing for donations to make it for the Portugal games.

“We’re seeking sponsorship from well-wishers be it companies or individuals so that we are able to travel as this is important in his career,” said Fredrick.

Pride is the only T44 track and F44 field athlete in the country but has failed to compete locally because of an alleged failure by the Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) to classify him saying he is the only blade runner hence he couldn’t compete locally.

Pride will also participate at the Paralympics in Namibia on a date to be advised where his role will be to motivate that country’s only blade runner aged 29.

He was amputated on the right leg below the knee and uses a blade. — @nonsy_m

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