The story of Zim’s female athletes

By Lawrence Trusida

Zimbabwe’s gold medals at the Olympics have all come from women’s sport, with the current exploits of some of the young women in sport giving hope for future medals.

It is not easy to be put in the same bracket as Kirsty Coventry the most decorated African Olympian, but when you name is mentioned in the same bracket it simply means you are world class.

This is the story of Donata Katai.

She made history at the South Africa National Junior Championships in 2018 by beating a 21-year old 100m backstroke record set by Kirsty Coventry.

She did not end there as she went on win two gold medals at the African junior championships in 2019 in the process breaking the 50m backstroke African junior record set by Kirsty Coventry again.

Her next target is Paris 2024 Olympics, she will be 20 then the same age as Kirsty Coventry when she won her first Gold medal at the Olympics.

Danielle Kaschula is not a household name in Zimbabwe but her success has propelled her to the top of the world and it’s only a matter of time before she is appreciated for what she has done.

At 13 she is already competing with seniors in rowing and she recently won bronze at the World Rowing Indoor Championships after being piped at the end by World champion Meg Knight and Sarah Mohammed the African champion.

She is the record holder in the 500m distance at the under 14 age group and the current world champion in the juniors and she also is also the African record holder amongst other records held by the young girl.

The first Zimbabwean female motocross champion in history is 17 year old motocross sensation, Tanya Muzinda.

Very popular for her exploits on and off the dust tracks of motors cross, Tanya has done well in a male-dominated field, racking-in regional and international awards.

She has also appeared on covers on glamour magazines.

Valeria Bhunu might have passed the junior category but her exploits on the tennis court at the turn of the millennium reminded everyone of how young girls can capture the imagination of a country.

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