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BAA to discipline athletes

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The president of Botswana Athletics Association (BAA) Mooketsi Thari believes indiscipline has been rearing its ugly head at his organisation and the matter needs to be dealt with urgently. So bad is the situation that Thari expects the BBA to enforce a strict code of conduct before the end of the year. In an interview with Sun Sports this week, Thari said BAA is busy formulating laws and regulations that will hopefully put his house back in order. The laws he said, will be a guide for both athletes and administrators.

However, the fiery BAA president was at pains to reveal the names of local athletes that are believed to have been difficult to deal with. Of late, there have been allegations of doping within the BAA. Other well-known athletes have been accused of eluding doping officers. The BBA President who has expressed grave concern over the matter said there is need to act swiftly before the name of the thriving sport code is tarnished. Recently, unconfirmed reports coming out of BAA are that some athletes are proving hard to deal with.

The athletes were reported to be turning rebellious and often neglecting instructions from BAA officials. “A professional athlete is a difficult person to deal with because they interact with many people daily who sometimes mislead them. They interact with many athletes who share their experiences and how they deal with their own managers,” Thari explained. In addition, Thari said it is those misleading advices that often make athletes behave as if they are bigger than the Association or worse, even bigger than the country. According to him, a contributing factor to the matter might be that locally, athletes are expected to race in just about any competition and this often frustrates elite athletes. “When we speak about development it means we should have categorised events and know which ones would benefit our elite athletes in the long run.” Thari said there is serious need for them to weigh all competitions and also reach an agreement with athletes to ensure that even when they accept invites from abroad, they will be representing the country well and not only themselves.

Still on that, Thari said it is an open secret that Botswana is doing well as far as athletics is concerned. He is a proud president in that there appears to be a bright future for most developing athletes adding that it pleases him to witness young local athletes clocking impressive times. Thari singled out the Botswana Integrated Sports Association (BISA) and gave them a pat on the shoulder for producing grassroot talent: “They are doing well unearthing talent around the country and we will continue to support them,” he said. The aim he said, is to increase the number of coaches locally, however the biggest challenge remains the lack of sponsorship. He further expressed concerned over the fact that other track and field events still remain a challenge in Botswana. Thari said the BAA needs to pay full attention to this in order to go forward.

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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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