Mochudi Centre Chiefs officials this week denied allegations that they have opened an account for supporters to contribute funds after they parted ways with their financiers.
Magosi spokesperson Clifford Mogomotsi was quick to rubbish allegations saying, “We have over 19 branches countrywide and each branch comprises 20 members or more, they function independently and they always help us whether we have sponsors or not, opening another account will be injustice to our fans so we will not open any account,” Mogomotsi said.
With the new season set to begin this Friday, Magosi have not yet unveiled a single sponsorship for their campaign. Nevertheless, Mogomotsi revealed that they are on the verge of revealing a new sponsorship. “We are currently speaking to people and promises have been made, but they are just promises because we have not yet put ink to paper, we however hope to announce a deal if all goes to plan,” he said.
Mogomotsi noted that convincing business entities to sponsor football has been a major challenge that befalls the entire football fraternity. “The business community has doubts, it takes time to convince them to change their perception on sponsoring sports, you look at teams like Extension Gunners they have been struggling with sponsorship over the years let alone the women’s league, which has been finding it challenging to attain a sponsor,” he said.
Mogomotsi said they are embarking on a mission to turnaround the declining fortunes at the club. “We have been overshadowed by a dark cloud ourselves, there have been fights over who should run the team and we understand that we do not have to conduct ourselves in that manner for us to attain a sponsor we have to sort ourselves out first.”
The club is also currently negotiating a deal with a local company for a technical sponsorship. Mogomotsi said they are currently doing well. “We have been in this situation before, we do well in this situation. We have invested a lot of time in the team and we will definitely convince sponsors through our successive wins.”
Mogomotsi believes they can go all the way and win the league despite many obstacles ahead of them. “We did not do well the past season and we have set up a stronger team compared to last season so we cannot undermine ourselves, we dream big and I promise we are going for league honours this season.” Magosi will face bitter rivals Extension Gunners of Lobatse this Saturday evening at the National Stadium. Kick-off is 2000hrs.
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.”
BFA will not declare the season null and void – yet
Amidst wide spreading fears that Botswana’s top flight league might be canceled and considered null and void because of the crippling Covid-19 pandemic, the Botswana Football Association (BFA) has yet to make a determination on the matter and has in fact ruled out scrapping off the season altogether.
Local football observers and pundits alike have already started talking of the possibilities after similar considerations of nullifying their seasons were made in the leagues of other countries especially in Europe. No football activity has taken place in the country since social distancing measures were imposed to avoid the spread of the corona virus.
Local football pundit Fabian Zulu is one of those who believe there is a likelihood the football season will be nullified. “If the current situation persists, then there is a high possibility of declaring the league null and void. This situation wasn’t planned, no one knew that by now we would be facing this kind of situation; so the possibility is very high.
However, in an interview this week, BFA spokesperson Tumo Mpatane said the association has not considered canceling and nullifying the season as an option yet, adding that “currently we are observing a period of extreme social distancing, the ministry of health and wellness will obviously give advice on the possibility of getting back to football.”
Consequently the BFA still awaits the Ministry to declare that the risks of spreading the virus are reduced and come up with a contingency plan. “If the ministry says there is a reduced health risk we will play out the season; if they advise against it we will then see what steps to take. The health of our players is more important and we will be guided by the responsive authorities,” Mpatane remarked.
However, suspension or cancellation of the leagues across the world seems inevitable even as some European leagues, more specifically the English Premier League, are now contemplating a behind-closed-doors campaign to finish off the remaining matches.