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Dlamini quits

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There was a jubilant move this week in Lobatse and other areas of the country as Extension Gunners’ supporters celebrated the news of Chairman Kitso Dlamini’s resignation. Dlamini reportedly resigned over the weekend after a band of supporters threatened violence against him while others allegedly insulted his wife. For fear of his life and that of his family, he is said to have taken the decision to step down.

For over a month now, supporters of the well-followed club demanded the resignation of the entire Gunners’ management committee with the team having become the laughing stock of their rivals because of a string of poor results. Supporters blamed their woes on the management rather than the technical teams and players, saying poor running of the club was the source of their problems.

Incidentally, the club started the season on a high note, recording 12 points from their first four games under the tutelage of Keitumetse Paul and thereby leading the league log standings for the first time after many years. Paul has since moved to Mochudi Centre Chiefs as Assistant Coach after a fall out with the Gunners’ management.  Information reaching this publication already indicates that the club’s former Public Relations Officer Cassim Dada is being favored to take over the leadership of the club.

 The last straw for the Gunners’ faithful was their Friday 1-3 loss to Orapa United in a Mascom Top 8 quarter final match that saw the club tumble out of the cup on 4-2 aggregate after the first leg 1-1 draw in Orapa three weeks ago. The committee has also been blamed for failure to bring on board business partners to relieve or cushion supporters from contributing for every club activity, including daily expenses of the club.

In voting for the Dlamini-led committee, Gunners’ supporters entrusted their leadership with the responsibilities among others, identifying a business model which can move the club forward and also secure an investor to take care of the welfare of the players.  
Now it is their take that the management has failed, and now want people with fresh ideas who should be able to support their technical teams rather than fire them.

One of the club’s long serving players Monageng Thaele admitted in a recent interview that the current standoff between management and supporters was affecting their welfares as players. The player added that the team paid their salaries even though the payments are not consistent.  
The club’s Public Relations Officer Keorapetse Kgasa confirmed that the chairman has tendered his resignation. The deputy Chairman Oduetse Langwane has been elevated to the chairmanship.

According to Kgasa, the committee is empowered by the club’s constitution to co-opt members to fill the vacant post. Gunners will have an elective annual general assembly next year around June or July. Kgasa said negotiations with investors are at an advanced stage although he did not divulge much information. He pleaded: “I would like to ask our supporters to be patient, this team is self-sponsored. We do not have regular sources of income; we have not played at home for some time, which affects our income in a way.”

As of Tuesday evening, the Botswana Premier League had not received official information on Dlamini’s resignation. “We are aware of the news of his resignation, but my office is yet to receive official communication,” BPL CEO Bennett Mamelodi told Sun Sport. As club chairman, Dlamini also served in the premier league board.

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Well-endowed Galaxy

Isaac Pheko

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FIRE POWER: Galaxy await Rollers

It is only the third week of the 2018/19 BTC Premiership and things are already heating up. Leading the charge is a marauding Jwaneng Galaxy who have already thrown a heavy-handed gauntlet at their rivals after recording a highly impressive 10 goals in just two games.

Galaxy’s intention has been made clear this season after leaving their first two opponents with bloody noses and tails tucked between their legs. The former Mascom Top 8 champions are in a relentless war path with the premier league title on their radar. This weekend, Galaxy host bitter rivals Township Rollers in Jwaneng in what is expected to be a football grudge match. Rollers have been a prickly thorn in Galaxy’s quest to claim the premiership silverware for the past two seasons.

This means the weekend fixture will be the most compelling of the new season. However, Galaxy seem to be packing more heat coming into the Saturday fixture having annihilated both Prisons XI (5-0) and Security Systems (5-0). Galaxy are currently occupying first position alongside second place Sharps Shooting Stars at six points apeice. The game against Popa this weekend will be a litmus test for Galaxy. If the Debswana backed side beats the reigning champions they will establish themselves as potential contenders for the 2018/19 title honours. On the flipside, a loss against Rollers will only mean the first two games were short of a bluff.

Pound for pound Mapalastina have the best squad in the domestic league but a new look Galaxy are well endowed in their own right. In an interview this week, Galaxy spokesperson Tankiso Morake said they played Rollers three times last season and all the games ended in a draw. “Remember we played Rollers in the Mascom Top 8 in Lobatse,” an up-beat Morake said. Morake further said they expected their new coach to receive his permits and start manning the bench when they play Rollers this weekend. “Our supporters have told us that they expected nothing less than league honours this season.” Morake attributes the positive result to a great pre-season.

“You will remember that there was a fake list in the media indicating that we have parted ways with most of our players. You can see that the likes of Ayanda Molefe and Isaac Paeye are still part of the team. There is a lot of competition in our team because we mostly have young players in the team including Lebogang Ditsile who played at Highlands Park in South Africa.” Furthermore, Morake conceded that Rollers are a strong team but argued that they will win the games from the technical bench. “You will remember that we started the last season back tracking but this time things are different.”

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Bridge team fails to impress

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The local team comprised of under 16, under 21 and under 26 categories. In an interview this week, BBF spokesperson Mbakiso Malilo did not mince his words when he described the team’s performance as terrible with all the three teams failing to qualify for the quarter finals.

“Making it to the quarter finals was our target following a good showing in the online championship by our junior team. I believe we can work on improving the playing standard for kids (under 16) as they still stand a chance to compete in the under 21 and under 26 categories for future championships,” he said.

However, Malilo explained that the local youth team gained a lot of experience as the played against more advanced rivals. Quizzed on challenges they faced with a predominantly youthful team, Malilo said: “the trip was too long and for most of the players this was their first experienced of travelling such a great distance. The jet lag ended up affecting the team’s performance as they showed signs of fatigue.” Malilo said their objective was to train young players and give them exposure to the game early on.

“We managed to network with bridge power houses like the Netherlands. Official from the European country expressed interest in training our kids through bridge clinics and enhancing the standard of play and bidding.” Malilo said they selected the junior team that travelled to China through local tournament that was held in Gaborone earlier this year. The tournament was attend by mostly tertiary school students and out of school youth in the junior and youngsters’ category. For the under 16 category we invited student from secondary schools.

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