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Badilisha Lugha KISWAHILI

Preps for major events at standstill

4th November 2012

Although Tanzania is a sports mad country, it is no secret that we have failed to make a positive impact on major sporting events for many years.

For example, at this year’s momentous Olympic Games in London, it could be argued that our athletes went there just to make up the numbers.

What is even more frustrating about this situation is the fact that over the years, sports officials have promised us a haul of medals in the run-up to different competitions.

Indeed, for those of us who care passionately about local sports, our abysmal performances on the global sporting stage offer cause for great concern.

One recurring theme that runs through all our terribly poor outings at major championships has been the shoddy preparations for prestigious sporting extravaganzas.

And although an enormous song and dance has already been made about the importance of early and meticulous preparations, those running local sports as well as the authorities seem to forget this time and time again, as if they had collective amnesia.

Indeed, it would appear that no one has yet given this weighty matter the serious attention it deserves.

With the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland just two years away and the Rio Olympic Games four years down the line in 2016, our lackadaisical attitude to diligent preparations seems certain to ensure that our already badly dented reputation in sports receives a further hammering.

In an effort to avert this, one would like to urge all sports bodies as well as the authorities to begin drawing up their plans for success at forthcoming global competitions.

Indeed, considering the heady heights our athletes ascended to in the seventies and early eighties, it is a crying shame today to see our sportsmen and women reduced to also-rans at major sporting events.

Evidently, something needs to be done about this sorry state of affairs.

And perhaps, a bit encouragingly, what is needed is not a reinvention of the wheel but simply preparation, preparation and more preparation.

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