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Makwala doesn’t come cheap

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The founder of Sports View Runners Club Glody Dube says he will do anything possible to ensure that Commonwealth Games hero, Isaac Makwala (400M) competes at the upcoming Gaborone International Meet (GIM) event scheduled for April 29th.

Dube was speaking at the GIM Pula Medical Aid Fund sponsorship launch this past Monday. Pula are sponsoring the 2018 GIM to the tune of P50 000. In a bid to bring an exciting event to the people, Dube proclaimed that he wants to bring nothing but the best to Batswana. Despite being financially challenged, Dube said he fully understands that Batswana deserve a chance to witness their heroes run in home soil, in particular Makwala.

Team Botswana including Makwala are expected to arrive home today (Wednesday) from the just ended 2018 Commonwealth Games. Makwala won gold in the 400m final and led the 4x400m men’s relay team to another golden finish. Late last year, Makwala became the centre of controversy during the IAAF World Championships staged in London. He was reported to have contracted a contagious Norovirus and the IAAF barred him from competing in the 400m and 200m races. The runner went on to run a solo 200m run under wet weather conditions. After the London Championships Makwala proceeded to compete at the Diamond League. Upon his return to Botswana, Makwala never competed locally before kick starting his season in South Africa at the Grand Prix Series. “I am sure that every Motswana badly wants to see this young man who is currently at the peak of his career and it will be a dream come true to have him at the GIM event,” Dube said. Nevertheless, Dube will have to dig deep in his pockets to have Makwala at the GIM event, he revealed that the athlete has asked for a P 10 000 appearance fee.

“He is not just any ordinary athlete and we need to know that they run for a living, so we have to pay him and I will not rest until that is finalised,” he assured. Should the GIM team not be able to raise the money, Makwala is most likely to head to the Diamond League in Doha that is expected to start early next month. “Our event is more of the Diamond League and we need to do all it takes to alleviate it to the expected standard.” Other local athletes who are most likely to be present on the day include Amantle Montsho and Galefele Moroko of Sports View Runners Club. Quizzed about international athletes expected to grace the event, Dube remained cagey and said they are yet to finalise the list and will reveal the full list sometime next week. Nevertheless, the GIM Local Organising committee had initially expressed great interest in South African sprints Caster Semenya and Wayde Van Niekerk. Van Niekerk however did not compete in Australia following his recent injury.

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Zapata takes charge

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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

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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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