The women football league rose from the proverbial ashes this past weekend in Tswapong and Kweneng regions while Gaborone and other regions are expected to begin this week. The women league has been in comatose for months. The resuscitation of the Women’s league gives hope to local players who were left scratching their heads after the Botswana Football Association canned their women structures.
Speaking to Sun Sports this week, women national team coach Gaolethoo Nkutlwisang said it was high time they began playing saying the absence of the league killed the women game altogether locally.However, her biggest worry is that the league is still operating without a sponsor, she said the situation is most likely to weigh heavily on the teams.
“We need to go on a serious hunt for a sponsor because that was one of the reasons that led to the league being suspended,” she said.She called on Botswana Football Association (BFA) to up their game arguing that if the BFA leadership manages to find sponsors for the men’s league, then it should not so hard to find sponsorship for the ladies side.Nevertheless Nkutlwisang said there is need to reinforce measures as coaches. “We have to produce quality players who will convince sponsors that there is potential in our players, this will in the long run benefit the national team too,” she said.
Nkutlwisang also noted that they look forward to playing a beautiful game of football early next because since they returned from COSAFA Championships, they have been doing nothing. On the other hand, the under 20 women team coach Jacqueline Gaobinelwe said the league will assist in keeping their athletes in action, noting that it will make players ready for any national duty call up. Gaobinelwe was recently disappointed when BFA decided to withdraw the U-20 Women’s football team from the 2018 FIFA U-20 Women World Cup Qualifiers.
“It is my hope that they have sorted out all the issues that have been plaguing the league because they took a significant amount of time revamping. Meanwhile BFA Chief Executive Officer Mfolwe Mfolwe said they have not secured a sponsor yet, however it is one of the issues on the table. Mfolwe explained that they have resorted to playing regional football in the first year to reduce costs because they are currently financial constrained. “We are currently playing regional football, teams will be promoted to the National first division and ultimately the super /elite league.” However, the BFA CEO noted that everything will be determined by the number of teams playing, arguing that women have few teams as compared to men.
New GU Stadium Excites Mochudi based soccer rivals
Officials at Mochudi village’s biggest soccer clubs Mochudi Centre Chiefs and Mochudi Rovers are excited at the news that their district will soon have a state of the art football stadium after property and construction magnate Nicholas Zackhem announced the erection of the facility for Gaborone United.
Zackhem, owner and director of Zac Construction, revealed recently to this publication that a football stadium would be built in Bokaa village at a cost of P70 million, with the hope that all phases will be completed by 2025.
Edwin Mothulatshipi, Chairman of Centre Chiefs, as well as Mochudi Rovers’ Chairman Sugar Molefhe both spoke to The Midweek Sun on what the construction of the stadium means for their respective clubs. Both admit they would jump at the opportunity to use the facility for their official matches, and based on what Gaborone United financier Zackhem has shared with The Midweek Sun, it will not be difficult for all the other clubs based around the area to use the facility. TO READ THE COMPLETE STORY, BUY THIS WEEK’S EDITION (11 August 2021) OF THE MIDWEEK SUN AT A STORE NEAR YOU.
Local hockey body to incur massive financial loss post Covid-19
Botswana Hockey Association (BHA) President Unaswi Matebu has confessed that her Association will suffer major financial losses post the Covid 19 pandemic that has left the sport fraternity at a standstill.
Matebu recently told this publication that the current situation does not only have tremendous effects on their schedule, but also there will be financial implications more especially that the association does not have full time sponsors.
“We had to cancel most of our calendar activities such as tournaments, national team trainings, Board meetings, and club activities since mid-March this year, all of which have cost us money to prepare for,” Matebu remarked in an interview.
Additionally she said the planning phase for their 5-year Development Plan which was supposed to be launched in June will have to be postponed. Also there are national competitions that were postponed till further notice despite them having already set up teams and having already started preparing.
“Our Indoor Hockey Senior National teams had already started preparations for the Africa Cup of Nations – a World Cup qualifier – that was supposed to be held in June, 2020, in South Africa. Our Field Hockey Senior National teams had already begun preparations for the Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers that were supposed to be held in August, 2020 in Zimbabwe,” she added.
Moreover, it was going to be an excessively detailed and decorated year for local hockey governing body, with the Youth National teams having already began preparations for the Africa Youth Championships that were billed for September, 2020, in Ghana.
“Player conditioning has obviously been affected because athletes are currently not training as planned and what we had achieved so far might go to waste. We are only hoping that the Continental and World Hockey governing bodies will give us enough time to prepare for these competitions post the pandemic.”