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Chess academy embraces the visually impaired



The newly established Limitless Minds Chess Academy has brought high hopes of inclusion and active participation for the visually impaired community in the sport. Through its founder Keenese Katisenge, the academy aims to take the sport to the blind and partially sighted players and bring the game closer to people living with disabilities. The Academy recently partnered with the Botswana Association of the Blind and partially sighted. According to the coordinator of the Association Omphemetse Ramabokwa, the initiative is the first of its kind in the country and they are happy to be playing the board game. Ramabokwa said they have been sidelined in sports for a very long time.

However, of recent, they have been positive changes and attitude to their needs in sport. “I guess people are beginning to recognise us because it is not only chess, we also play goal ball, this gives us hope,” he said. He went on to plead with all government ministries to include the blind in sport saying it is sad that they are not included in programmes such as Re Ba Bona Ha and constituency tournaments. “One will be shocked to learn of the hidden talent we possess, however our biggest challenge lies with shortage of chess equipment.

Even beautiful ideas like the chess programme end up dying because we are struggling,” he said. Ramabokwa expressed delight as the blind will for the first time have an opportunity to participate at the Botswana International Junior Chess Championships scheduled for late this year. For her part, Katisenge said the academy contributes positively to the society by using chess as tool for empowerment and social inclusion. She mentioned that the main beneficiaries for the initiative are the visually impaired kids based at the Mochudi Resource Centre in Kgatleng District. So far, 60 visually impaired students aged between 5-17 have been enrolled in the chess for the visually impaired programme at the centre. “We would like to be the leading academy in Botswana and the whole of Africa when it comes to creativity innovation and inclusion.

We would like to introduce sport programs designed to meet the needs of different communities in our societies thus complementing the efforts of our mother body Botswana Chess Federation (BCF),” Katisenge said. Lessons for the visually impaired students begun early this year and the program received a major boost of P50 000 from Mascom Wireless Company.

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Zapata takes charge



TAKING CHARGE: Zapata assumes his position

Township Rollers Head Coach Rodolfo Zapata was this past Tuesday in charge of the team’s training session, a first since he was appointed Rollers coach in November 2018.

Sun Sports has been reliably informed by sources that were present at the morning session that the Argentine coach was at the grounds and it was all clear that he is now the man in control of the team.

Zapata was made to jump through hoops before he could finally take over the reins at Rollers. First he had to battle with his former club, Gaborone United to cancel his active working permit with the team. The matter dragged for more than a month.

When GU finally gave in, Zapata’s qualifications as a coach were questioned. This came as shocking given that Zapata is GU’s former coach. Nevertheless, a source within Botswana Football Association (BFA) circles has told this paper that Zapata was cleared by CAF last week. As things stand Zapata will be expected on the bench this coming Friday when they play Notwane. If not, then his first job will be the Mascom Top 8 Semi-final against GU next week.

The Rollers management could not be reached yesterday as their phones rang unanswered and repeated efforts revealed that the team spokesperson, Bafana Pheto is currently across borders.
Meanwhile, Zapata’s arrival comes at a crucial time following Rollers ‘s embarrassing defeat to the hands of rivals Jwaneng Galaxy this past weekend. Galaxy cut short the endless winning streak of the defending championships to serve them their second loss since the beginning of the league with a score line of 3-1.

Of late , unconfirmed reports suggest that players had grown impatient with the caretaker coach, Thabo Motang. They differed and questioned his decisions on the pitch. Motang is now reported to have gone back to the department he knows best, goalkeeper coach.

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Moluba wants a replica of previous success

Tshepo Kehemile



PLAY MAKER: Moalosi is a prolific goal scorer

Township Rollers influential midfielder, Edwin Moalosi confirmed his ambitions to help his team to repeat their run in the previous season to win both Botswana Telecommunication (BTC) Premiership league and the Mascom Top 8. Moluba as he is affectionately known said this after their 3-1 loss to Jwaneng Galaxy at the National Stadium this past Saturday.

Rollers 2018/19 BTC league campaign have been impressive thus far as they are still at the summit of the log despite their loss over the weekend. The Galaxy loss was their second, having lost to the other mining team, Orapa United. However, they have already reached the semi-finals of the Mascom Top 8.

Moalosi told Sun Sport that this season is not going to be a walk in the path, “It is not easy being the defending Champions as you become the team to beat, every team will try hard not to give you space to play or attack hence all the games we play become a mammoth task,” said Moalosi.

Moalosi further stated that being eliminated from the Confederations of African Football (CAF) Champions league early was a blessing in disguise, “We are now out of the CAF Champions league and we can now focus on doing well in the domestic league and cup tournament (Mascom Top 8).

In addition, we need to double our efforts as players so that we reach our ultimate goals,” he said.
Quizzed about his individual goals as a player despite picking so many injuries this season, he said, “Injuries are part of the game, it only depends on every player as to how you respond to it, I am always positive regardless of the circumstances I come across. I want to increase my goal tally and hopefully improve my assists as well,” explained.

However, Jwaneng Galaxy Captain, Olebogeng Malebye who scored a marvellous curler on the day said they are going to give Rollers a run for their money this season, “We are going to fight to death to try and leapfrog Rollers and eventually win the league as it has been our aim for a long time. And finally, we managed to beat them after a very long time trying with no success,” said Malebye.

Jwaneng Galaxy’s season is slowly improving as they are now second on the log, and Orapa United seems to be struggling a bit but the league is still open. Another round of BTC Premiership league matches is expected to continue this coming weekend with a couple of interesting fixtures to look out to including Township Rollers and Notwane FC on Friday at Molepolole and Security Systems and Mochudi Centre Chiefs on Saturday at the same venue, just to mention a few.

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