THE Zimbabwe Pool Association (Zipa) has finally embraced the fact that “to change habits, we must study the habits of successful role models” as the association has declared that the country’s competitive pool will now be played at non-alcoholic centres.
Pool in Zimbabwe has greatly been associated with drunkenness and promiscuity. In 2017, we reported there was alleged violence and sexual misconduct at the All-Africa Pool Championships (APPA) that were held in Harare.
One Robin Goremucheche, a member of the local pool family, was compelled to write to Zipa and the Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC), calling on them to rein in the culprits, who were part of the tournament that had participants from Zimbabwe, South Africa, Uganda and Zambia.
Goremucheche alleged that visibly drunk certain ladies from Team Zimbabwe, officials and male teammates were involved in sexual escapades while in camp.
“Our elective Annual General Meeting (AGM) to be held on 29 May will mark the return of competitive pool in the country. The new executive that will be ushered will submit our report to SRC for approval. We have been running test matches and all mini-tourneys were successful. Covid-19 WHO guidelines and protocols were fully adhered to. We have also identified non-alcoholic pool halls where these test matches have been played. Our state of preparedness is at 99 percent,” said Zipa technical director Wellington “Dewa” Chikasha.
He added: “The idea is to try and move competitive pool out from bars. We aim to follow what our regional counterparts are doing, where sale of alcohol is prohibited at pool halls or arenas. Only food and water are served at those pool arenas.”
Pool was among the sports codes that were put on hold early last year owing to the Covid-19 pandemic.
A total of 17 medium and high-risk sport codes were in late March given the green light to resume activities by SRC.