17 Dec 2014 17:10pm
By Hesron Kapanga
WINDHOEK, 17 DEC (NAMPA) Namibia ended fifth overall with 45 medals at the recent Zone Six Youth Games held in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.
The Supreme Council for Sports in Africa (SCSA)-run games took place from 05 to 14 December.
The team of 125 Namibian athletes competed in football (men and women), track and field, boxing, netball, swimming, and tennis.
The team also consisted of Paralympic athletes.
Namibia collected seven gold medals, 15 silver and 23 bronze.
South Africa are overall winners with 121 medals of which 64 are gold, followed by Zimbabwe with 92 medals (18 gold); Angola third with 20 medals (11 gold); and Botswana fourth with 32 medals (eight gold).
Zambia ended sixth with 26 medals (seven gold); Mozambique seventh with 24 medals (seven gold); Lesotho eighth with 10 medals (three gold); Swaziland ninth with six medals (three gold); Malawi 10th with nine medals (one gold).
Namibias Paralympic track and field athletes won most of their countrys gold medals. Out of a total of 17 medals (four gold, eight silver, five bronze) won by this special group of athletes, Lahja Ishitile won three gold medals in the T11 100 metre (m), 200m and 400m, and Aino Mushila one gold in the T12 400m.
Namibian swimmers collected two gold medals, six silver and 11 bronze.
Zanre Oberholzer won two gold medals in the 100 metres (m) backstroke and 200m backstroke.
Namibias young boxers did not do exceptionally well at the Youth Games, and only collected one gold and six bronze medals.
Max Ipinge won the gold medal.
TRACK AND FIELD
Sakaria Kakunde won one silver medal in high jump. All other track and field athletes ended fourth in their respective disciplines.
The national under-20 mens football team's poor showing at the previous five editions of the Youth Games was surpassed by a bronze medal won this time around.
Namibia overcame Malawi 2-1 in their third spot play-off encounter to claim the bronze medal.
Namibia went into the half-time break trailing 0-1, after failing to convert their scoring opportunities.
In the second half, the Namibians picked up their game and were awarded a penalty in the 48th minute, which was converted by George Hummel.
With 11 minutes left on the clock, Hiha Katjivena scored Namibias second goal.
The Namibian netball team ended fourth in a group of five teams. Zimbabwe won gold, South Africa silver and Botswana bronze. Swaziland ended fifth.
The tennis team of Kudzai Toto and Pieter Theron did not do well in their singles and doubles, and missed out on medals.
Speaking to Nampa on Tuesday, Team Namibia Chef de Mission Roger Kambatuku said he was happy with the team's achievements in Bulawayo.
We did not prepare very well like two years ago in Zambia where we ended second with nine gold medals. This year we had general elections, school exams and the womens football championship, and the teams did not get their preparation monies on time, but I am proud of them winning 45 medals of which seven are gold, he said.
Kambatuku added that Namibia did not take a big team like other countries. South Africa, Zimbabwe and Angola had more than 200 athletes each.
The next edition of the Under-20 Youth Games will be held in Angola in 2016.