Tanzania is located in East Africa, and along with most African countries is best known for its runners in track and field events. The country competes in the Olympics and is also a leader in athletics in both the Commonwealth Games and the African Championships. There is considerable interest amongst Tanzanians in sports, with the country’s football, boxing and basketball teams all widely celebrated and keenly followed.
Popular Sports In Tanzania – Football & Boxing
Football predictably tops the most popular sports in Tanzania for both young and old. It is an accessible game, cheap to play, and an integral part of every childhood. Football clubs have been around since the 1920s, and although the sport has not yet scaled up to international levels, it may not be long before there is a multimillion dollar transfer from Simba FC or Yanga FC.
The popularity of boxing in Tanzania has also risen steadily since it was introduced about forty years ago. Currently, Tanzanian boxers have found a niche in international leagues, and some good wins have contributed to its mass following. There are also a large number of local boxing leagues which have been introduced to popularise and attract more local talent to the sport.
The Challenges For Tanzanian Athletes
Over the years, the country has been attempting to improve the quality of athletes across a wide variety of sports. However, Tanzania suffers from a lack of structured training programmes, combined with a lack of organised financial support. Athletes are constantly struggling to gain worldwide recognition and also to encourage new blood to the sports. Thankfully, there are now various organisations committed to overcoming these challenges and reaching the big leagues globally.
Tanzania May Surprise The World
Sports is becoming an important driver in the country and Tanzanians have also started to become professionals in newer international streams such as weightlifting, handball, and cricket. Sports education has been made available in schools, colleges, and virtually every institution in the country. It seems that Tanzania is close to making the leap towards worldwide leagues and may soon be prevalent in international competitions.