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CHURCH TAKES OVER BOKA DOJO

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Athletes want the church removed from their dojo

We are not training because of that church-Athletes

I agree with athletes- BOKA President

Botswana Karate Association (BOKA) national team athletes are currently in a stand off with Rockland Family International Church of over the use of the association’s dojo. This week, Sun Sports learnt that BOKA has been renting the dojo to Rockland church for the past few years.

However, the relationship between the two is now turning sour after athletes accused disrupting their training program ahead of the Karate world championships in Spain. In an interview this week some BOKA athletes expressed concern over access to the training facility. According to the athletes who spoke on condition of anonymity, the facility is only available to them twice a week.

The rest of the days are said to be reserved for the church services. So frustrated are the athletes that they called on BOKA leadership to remove the church from the dojo. “All of a sudden they are a priority, how are we supposed to prepare for major tournaments if we train twice a week,” said a concerned athlete. The athletes argued that they do not understand the relationship between BOKA and the Church.

“This situation needs to be dealt with as soon as possible.” The athletes argued that they were no proper training or even camp and the unavailability of the hall was also a contributing factor. Reached for comment this week, BOKA president Tshepo Bathai said that the hall is a revenue stream and is available for renting.Nevertheless he agreed that the current setup was a bit unfair on his athletes. “I personally do not agree with the current arrangement and have communicated this to the committee, it is one of the issues on the table. The hall should be used for its primarily role, anything that comes after that is secondary,” Bathai said.

Bathai explained that the church got into agreement with the association long before his committee assumed office last year. He said the contract has since elapsed and they will be looking to rectify the situation. For his part, the association spokesperson Isaiah Ramontshonyane said athletes are training well and they have not been encountering problems. He maintained that they have been in partnership with the church for a long time and yet they managed to produce good results. He however said they will be willing to bend if need be so as they do not inconvenience the athletes in any form. “That hall is for athletes and whenever we have Karate activities we inform the Church and they excuse us, there was no training camp because of insufficient funds,” Ramontshonyane said.

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Selibe Phikwe bowls club faces closure

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Selibe-Phikwe Bowls Club faces a possible collapse, Sun Sports has learnt. This follows the closure of the BCL mine back in 2016, which has seen the club struggle without the supply of electricity and water.

Speaking to this publication this week, the chairperson of Phikwe club Oabona Motladiile said that things have been stagnant since the mine closed doors. “Nothing is happening here, there is no action at all because when the mine closed, it meant there was no one to pay for the water and electricity bills,” Motladiile said.

Motlaadile explained that their grounds are situated at Area 2, a place that the mine paid all bills for, however it has since proved very hard for them to maintain the green that needs constant watering. He said they do not have any alternative facilities to use and have since informed the Phikwe council about their difficulties but still solutions have not been found.

The Phikwe Chairman at the time of going to press said he was not sure of the exact figures they needed on a monthly basis but around 20 000 litres of water and electricity not exceeding P 1 000. He lamented that the Phikwe club is one of the oldest clubs locally and at one point had about 30 members. However, numbers have been dropping because there is no action.

“We are a very competitive club of men and women who make it into the national team,” he said. John Gaborutwe who is the BBA Vice President said that the possible closure of Phikwe Bowls Club was one of the topical issues to be discussed during the BBA Annual General Meeting (AGM) this coming weekend. The affiliates will be expected to vote for a new Vice President, Treasurer and Director of Bowls as the term for the current office bearers expires.

The AGM will be followed by the start of the Rose Bowl tournament. The tournament is the 1st of the 5-series major tournaments for the 2019 season. The remaining tournaments will be held in Francistown, Orapa, Jwaneng and Phikwe respectively. Jwaneng club is the defending champions.

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BFA FIRES BRIGHT

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Allegations coming out of the Botswana Football Association (BFA) are that national football team head coach Major David Bright has been fired as of Tuesday this week. The illustrious veteran tactician took over from Englishman Peter James Butler more than a year ago.

At the helm of the Zebras, Bright struggled to bring home positive results and find winning combinations. Having failed to lead Zebras past the qualifying stages of the 2019 Afcon competition was the first sign of trouble for the veteran coach at Lekidi. Furthermore the experienced tactician was expected to improve Botswana’s position in the FIFA world rankings. The Zebras are currently in the lowly 145th position.

According to sources close to the matter, Bright was handed a termination letter and challenged to show cause why he should not be relieved of his duties at Lekidi. As one of the most decorated coaches in both Botswana and CAF region, Bright has coached numerous teams including South Africa’s Bay United, Gaborone United and Morupule Wonders.

Reached for comment on the matter the BFA president Maclean Letshwiti insisted that the former army man is still in charge of the senior national team. For his part Bright said he could not comment on the matter and referred Sun Sport to the BFA.

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