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General => Other Sports => General Discussion => 2012 Olympic Archive => Topic started by: Icebreaker on July 30, 2012, 05:33

Title: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: Icebreaker on July 30, 2012, 05:33
Watching the Olympic swimming.

I am baffled by the number of - white - athletes from Zimbabwe.  I admit my ignorance of the situation there but I actually am surprised by this, I didn't think after 30 years of Mugabe that there were that many whites left in Zimbabwe, certainly not prosperous ones.  And let's be honest, to get to the Olympics, you better have a prosperous family.  While we're on it, I'm actually surprised to see any athletes from Zimbabwe, a country that has become pretty much an economic basket case, but they can find the pennies to send a team to the Olympics?

What is the story - ex-pats carrying the flag, or ... .
Title: Re: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: DinZ on July 30, 2012, 09:38
well if you are talking about swimming then yes most of them left Zimbabwe a long time ago and are largely the end results of a strong development program that started when i was a child (i had a friend from Zim when i was about 10 who did competitive swimming)

a lot of the whites have left zimbabwe but a lot of remained. many of those that have left have moved to places like Zambia and even North Australia but any successful athletes often move into the American collegiate system.
Title: Re: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: ram on July 30, 2012, 13:05
Zimbabwean sport has sizeable whites in it, not nearly as much as South Africa (in cricket, rugger, and most sports bar football). The Zimbabwean cricket team's star player is white, and the stupidity is being slowly left behind with the changes in administration, both in sport and with the larger role for the likes of Tsangvirai in the govt.
Title: Re: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: DinZ on July 30, 2012, 23:44
in fact i think you will find a large proportion of the smaller countries taking part in swimming, even ones doing fairly well, the athletes are either in american colleges or get trained in Australia
Title: Re: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: L'arri on July 31, 2012, 06:53
in fact i think you will find a large proportion of the smaller countries taking part in swimming, even ones doing fairly well, the athletes are either in american colleges or get trained in Australia

Just curious. What's in it for Australia? Do these countries fork out for their athletes' training or is it quid pro quo, like political facilitation of mining rights or something?
Title: Re: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: DinZ on July 31, 2012, 07:54
Just curious. What's in it for Australia? Do these countries fork out for their athletes' training or is it quid pro quo, like political facilitation of mining rights or something?

Not funded by australia. So theyare paid by their federation, or private money or though unis here

But lots of good coaches and facilities here. Same with lots of olympics sports i think.
Title: Re: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: froome19 on July 31, 2012, 09:56
Just curious. What's in it for Australia? Do these countries fork out for their athletes' training or is it quid pro quo, like political facilitation of mining rights or something?
In fact on that topic, the Australian swimming union or whatever they are called, are in fact paying their coaches double if they do not take on and train any foreign athletes.

This is as many of the Chinese swimmers who are doing so well in the pool at the moment are based and trained in Australia and that is one of the main catalysts for their immense success.

It seems to be a recurring theme specifically in swimming but in many sports and another example is the Lithuanian 15 year old who won the breast stroke yesterday who is trained in Plymouth and indeed if not that training she would not have ever had a possibility of winning the gold medal.

So it seems like the Aussies who are increasingly being overshadowed by the Chinese and other countries in the pool are launching campaigns to ensure that this practice ceases.
Title: Re: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: ram on July 31, 2012, 13:57
Nothing in it for the Austraiyans, it's just a preferred choice of destination. England is another preferred place.
Title: Re: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: Tuart on August 17, 2012, 14:32
Can't see why if the dosh is being offered they can't train here, and if a freelancing Aussie coach wants to train them, so what?

If it's the Aussie-funded (Murdoch), Aussie-system (Centre of Excellence/AIS), Aussie-coached (Sutton etc), now that becomes a problem but I'm sure we can just look at it as Aussies succeeding everywhere. ;)
Title: Re: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: ram on August 18, 2012, 01:15
WA gets credit for wrecking Sean Ervine too.
Title: Re: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: The Hitch on August 18, 2012, 17:15
Posted this in another thread also,  but its more relevant here. I was very surprised to hear that the Kenyan flag bearer for London was a white swimmer who didnt really stand much of a chance of a medal. Very surprising considering the middle to long distance running talent that Kenya has.
Title: Re: Excuse my ignorance - Zimbabwe
Post by: Ram on April 08, 2016, 18:37
The Good Murungu offers some very good insight into Zimbabwean sport and administration by a forrin who was Zim coach. Not quite the stereotype...