Zimbabwe was represented by one archer in the Archery at the 1980 Olympics, with him making his only appearance in the Olympics. In the competition David Campbell Milne finished in 34th place outscored four archers.
Zimbabwe was represented by five male athletes in the athletics at the 1980 Olympics, Zephaniah Ncube who at the time was 23 competed in his first Olympics.
Kenias Tembo competed in the 10,000 meters in what would be his only Olympics. In his heat, he would finish in 10th place which didn't get him through to the final as the top 4 got through to the final automatically with the next best three getting in.
Zimbabwe entered three in the marathon, with two of them finishing. The youngest of the three, Tapfumaneyi Jonga who would compete at the shorter events in the next Olympics finished the highest as he finished in 51st place with the gap to first place being over thirty-five minutes. Six minutes behind was Abel Nkhoma who was the last runner to finish in the marathon.
After the boycott the committee sent out invitations for other nations to join the women's competition. Zimbabwe agreed to the invitation and in their only appearance in the Olympic hockey to date, they would take out the gold medal as they shocked the whole world in taking it out. Some of sport historians call this result a "fairytale" as the nation wouldn't get another medal until the Athens.