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Transfer Mayhem rattles BFA

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The Botswana Football Association (BFA) has defended itself against an embarrassing fiasco that has blocked the highly publicized move of three local players to the South African National First Division league.

The three players, Mosha Gaolaolwe, Gape Mohutsiwa from Township Rollers and Thero Setsile (Jwaneng Galaxy) were set to join TS Galaxy in the South African second tier league. Through a statement this week, BFA was quick to distance itself from the humiliating transfer window mishap involving the three clubs. “The BFA would like to categorically inform the general public that the failure of the intended transfers was not due to any action and or lack thereof from the Association and its employees,” BFA Chief Executive Officer, Mfolo Mfolo said through a statement.

Mfolo explained that FIFA has since developed a system called Transfer Management System (TMS) which is used for inter club transfers, that is when a player moves from one team to another at adifferent associations. “No transfers involving two different Associations can take place without going through the TMS. Every Club in the world, affiliated to FIFA and CAF has a designated administrator and so does every Football Association. This system is web based, hence is accessible through the internet,” Mfolo said through the statement. According to Mfolo, a sequence of events has to occur in order for a transfer to take place:

The recipient club must first engage the holding/counter club, the one that is releasing the player, through TMS. Furthermore, Mfolo explained that the counter club must then respond to the requesting club through the same system; “Upon the two clubs agreeing to the transfer through the TMS, the counter Association, the one which the releasing club belongs to will confirm if indeed the requested player/s are registered with same. Upon confirmation by the counter Association, the receiving association will request for the release of the ITC which will be duly released by the holding association.” Through the statement the BFA boss took time to chronicle what transpired between the three parties. “On the 31st January 2019 at 2336hrs, TS Galaxy engaged Township Rollers in the TMS in relation to the transfer of Mosha Gaolaolwe and Gape Mohutsiwa and the request was completed at 2347hrs.”

The BFA CEO further explained that on the same date at 2336hrs Township Rollers responded to the request in the affirmative and finished the transaction at 2347hrs.“The counter/releasing Association could not react to the request as it was outside working hours and there had been no prior arrangement made with the counter/releasing Association to await the transaction. The practise has been that where clubs anticipate transactions in TMS outside working hours, they would inform the Association in advance so that prior arrangements are made to assist the transacting clubs especially on deadline day of any registration period.”

According to Mfolo, the counter/releasing Association (BFA) only became aware of the pending transactions in the morning 01 February 2019 when the Office opened for business and duly responded to the request by 0808hrs. “Although the counter/releasing Association had responded to the request, FIFA declined to issue the ITC as the transfer was concluded outside the receiving Association’s transfer period. Despite the rejection of the request by FIFA, the receiving club, in this case TS Galaxy had an option to appeal to the FIFA Players Status Committee if indeed it felt aggrieved of the decision in the TMS, which option the club has not utilised to date.”

Mfolo said: “We have also noted that there was a similar transaction involving the same club (TS Galaxy) and Jwaneng Galaxy. In the said instance, TS Galaxy did not engage Jwaneng Galaxy regarding the transfer of Thero Setsile despite the initiative by Jwaneng Galaxy to engage TS Galaxy in the TMS. The transfer eventually fell by the wayside due to the non-action by the receiving club.” Following the unfortunate sequence of events, the BFA has since rebuffed social media statements suggesting that the non-materialisation of the transaction was as a result of failure to act by the BFA.

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Local boxers ready for regional tourney

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CONFIDENT: Newly unveiled LOC is confident that the regional tourney will be a success

Botswana Boxing Association (BoBA) this past Tuesday officially unveiled a Local Organising Committee (LOC) that has been tasked with preparing for the upcoming Zone 4 championships that are to be held in Botswana.

The team is headed by celebrated boxing legend France Mabiletsa and is expected to host more than seven countries that are expected to descend in Botswana in the next two weeks. Officiating at the event, Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC) Vice Chairperson Tsoseletso Magang said that BoBA officials should refrain from interfering with the task given to the LOC. She noted that many sporting codes often give the LOC the responsibility of delivering an event only for the code members to bully themselves into the affairs of the LOC and disrupts the preparations.

Magang warned that there is little time left before the tournament, and with that, the LOC will need all the support to ensure they deliver a successful event. She noted that hosting the regional tournament gave Botswana an upper hand of fielding more athletes that will have an opportunity to qualify for the Africa Championships scheduled for later this year.

For his part, Mabiletsa noted that they have already hit the ground running and confident that the event will be a success. The competition will be hosted in Botho College and they are in talks with Ave Maria to accommodate athletes. “Life will be made much easier for athletes if they are accommodated at Ave Maria because it is closer to the competition venue,” he said.

He explained that the zone is made up of 12 countries of Lesotho, Angola, Malawi, South Africa and Zimbabwe among others. However as of this past Tuesday, only seven had confirmed participation and they expect to finalize the logistics by the end of the week.

Meanwhile, a formidable national boxing team of eight men captained by Mmusie Tswiiige (60kg) and three ladies led by Lethabo Modukanele (48kg) will represent the country at the regional tournament.

According to the Head coach Lechedzani ‘Master’ Luza, the team has been on camp for the past three weeks. In his opinion, the team is ready to compete. “Generally, they are not bad, we need to work on a few things such as power and speed on some boxers, the defence department is also not bad,” he said.

Luza noted that Botswana has always established herself as a powerhouse and there is no doubt that majority, if not all team Botswana members will win a medal during competition time. He explained that the competition was one of the many leading to Tokyo 2020 Olympics and will give local boxers an opportunity to qualify for the Olympics.

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Branch does it again

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Local motorcycle racing sensation Ross Branch has continued his stellar form after securing overall second position in the internationally renowned Merzouga Rally. The race came to a conclusion this past weekend and Branch has proven his mettle amongst some of the best rally motorcyclists in the world.

The podium finish is expected to take the Dakar Rally racer to even greater heights in the hugely competitive and expensive sport. It has been barely two months since the talented local rider emerged as a top class racer at the Dakar Rally where he finished 13 and walked away with the fastest rookie of the 10 000 km odyssey.

At Merzouga, things seemed a little better for the rider as the terrain offer sand and rock as opposed to the treacherous dunes in Dakar. Branch who was using a different navigation system in Morocco showed his pace after winning the fourth stage of the race last week Thursday.

Prior to his podium finish Branch said Merzouga was only his second rally and he was willing to learn from some of the top riders in the sport. The KTM 450cc rider said he was now setting his sights on other major races including the 2020 Dakar Rally that has been confirmed for Saudi Arabia.

Since returning from the Dakar, Ross has stayed busy and competed at the cross-country championship in Kwazulu Natal in South Africa, where he finished fourth. The local rider is expected to compete at the upcoming 1000 km Toyota Desert Race, an event he has won more than seven times.

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