The moment of Young Warriors’ historic triumph in Yaoundé, Cameroon will never be retold first hand to the Zimbabwean audience as no local journalist travelled to Cameroon to cover the match.
Newspaper reports, radio and television stories on the Young Warriors were done on desks by reporters back home.
There is an agreement that both the media and ZIFA have not done justice on Zimbabwe’s emerging stars, the Young Warriors.
The old adage, ‘failure is an orphan and success has many fathers, aptly sums up the Young Warriors’ journey to qualification for September’s African Games finals.
Some PSL clubs refused to release players, the funds were inadequate and no single journalist travelled with the U-23 squad to Cameroon.
Alone in a far country, Pasuwa’s troops stood in battle and have brought good tidings to millions of Zimbabweans back home.
The victory in Yaoundé has now sparked an excitement that has now attracted many fathers.
Celebratory headlines yea but written by people who never witnessed the match.
In the worst case, the Daily News totally ignored the story and chose to focus on Triangle’s victory over Caps United.
Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister, Professor Jonathan Moyo acknowledges the blame for failing to tell the real story from Yaoundé but adds his ministry is committed to giving Zimbabwean sport its worthy media coverage.
“As a ministry we value the role and significance of sport in this country and I want to say the failure to have a media person in Yaounde is a wrong which however does not reflect my ministry’s stance on sport. It however also is a reflection of the environment when the media has lost confidence in football and this could have led to the supposed shun,” said Professor Moyo.
The blame does not only lie with the media institutions but with the responsible federation whose haphazard way of management has too often made it difficult for the media to travel with the teams outside the country, says veteran sports journalist, Michael Kariati.
“In the past, it used to be mandatory but economic challenges have made media houses to denigrate sport to being the ‘other news issues’ but also when information alone is not being given from the responsible federation, it becomes difficult for the media to make proper planning to go and give coverage,” said Kariati.
The ‘Heroes of Yaounde’ as the media reported will only be able to tell the story for themselves after the nation failed them.
Never mind how the clubs that refused to release players for a national cause will be feeling.
For there is no doubt Callisto Pasuwa’s boys are heroes indeed!
Credit : ZBC