My son is the finest basketball players to have emerge from Zimbabwe

By IndepthAfrica
In Southern Africa
Dec 10th, 2012

Controversy: Robert Mugabe and his wife, Grace, yesterday at the beatification ceremony for the late Pope John Paul II at the Vatican

The state controlled media today reports that President Robert Mugabe’s son Robert Junior has abandoned his dream of playing professional basketball in the US because of the economic sanctions imposed on the country.

According to Sunday Mail his mother, First Lady, Grace Mugabe has revealed how her son’s dreams where crushed by the west. The Robert JNR has been hailed as one of the finest basketball players to emerge out of the country and has two national caps to his name.

He skippered the Zimbabwe Under-18 squad during the Zone VI basketball championships held in Harare two years ago, and also took part in an exhibition match between Zimbabwe and the United States of America AND 1 All-star team.

Tino, as the young Mugabe is referred to in basketball circles, used the regional championships to answer critics who insinuated that his inclusion in the national team had more to do with his DNA than his talent.

That fine outing during the Zone VI championship was followed by another top drawer show when the Zimbabwe All Star team faced star studded United States AND1 basketball side at the City Sports Centre early this year.

Although Zimbabwe went on to lose that clash 97-65 the visitors admitted to having a tough time containing the young Mugabe on the court with one of their coaches MC Sugar Ray describing him as a bright prospect.

“He had a lot of energy, lots of skill and with more training could become a bright prospect,” Sugar Ray was quoted as saying soon after the exhibition match.

Now despite his undoubted talent and the praises being showered on him by US scouts who have a had a chance to view a video footage of his AND1 stellar show the First Lady Amai Mugabe yesterday disclosed that her son appreciates that his dream of playing professional basketball in the Unites States cannot materialise.

Speaking at Midlands Children’s Home here yesterday Amai Mugabe revealed that she had to sit Tino down and explain what the illegal sanctions that were imposed on the country meant to his basketball career.

“President Mugabe sacrifices his life and that of his family just to be the country’s breadwinner. The sanctions don’t just affect him but our family as well. My son is very good at basketball, he even captained the national Under-18 side, but he cannot pursue his dream of playing basketball in the United States of America. The US has the best basketball league in the world, the NBA, but my son cannot try his luck there because of these sanctions. We had to sit him down and explain that he cannot join a club playing in the US college league because of the sanctions. It hurt him because there was a lot of interest in him but now he understands what it means to be the son of President Mugabe,” she said.

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