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Mtongwiza Targets Grassroots Rugby Development


Losson Mtongwiza has been elected as the new president of the Zimbabwe Rugby Union (ZRU) at the 129th Annual General Meeting held this weekend in Harare.

Mtongwiza clinched the presidency in a hotly contested election, edging out Aaron Jani by a single vote. The election featured four candidates, including Gerald Sibanda and Gilbert Nyamutsamba.

Mtongwiza secured seven votes, just ahead of Jani’s six, while Sibanda and Nyamutsamba garnered three and one votes respectively.

He expressed his commitment to bolstering the sport’s grassroots level. “It’s an honour to lead this union,” he stated. “We have several plans that we need to put into place, and one of our key factors is our development rugby where we are aiming to train a thousand new coaches a year.”

Mtongwiza’s ambitious agenda includes the appointment of a director of rugby and the implementation of a high-performance plan. “We will sign two agreements with two franchises in South Africa so that our players will go to South Africa on a yearly basis on tour,” he revealed. This strategic move is designed to enhance the selection process for the national team, with an eye towards the Rugby World Cup.

The new ZRU president will be supported by Thembalani Ncube and Tapfuma Parirenyatwa, who have been elected as vice presidents for the South and North regions, respectively. Mtongwiza’s leadership marks a new chapter for Zimbabwean rugby, as the nation sets its sights on global competition and the development of the sport at home.

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As a player in the mid-90s, Mtongwiza represented Zimbabwe at Under-20 and Under-21 levels, and turned out domestically for Old Hararians and Harare Sports Club.

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Multi-award winning journalist/photojournalist with keen interests in politics, youth, child rights, women and development issues. Follow Lovejoy On Twitter @L_JayMut

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