Saturday, June 22, 2024

BNOC prepares Team Botswana for African Youth Games

Botswana National Olympics Committee (BNOC) has finally made a shortlist of athletes that will represent Team Botswana for the upcoming Africa Youth Games that will be held in Gaborone within a month’s time.

Speaking during a media briefing held at Lansmore Hotel earlier this week, Team Botswana’s Chef de Mission (CDM) Tshepho Sitale said a total of 197 athletes who will be competing across all the 21 sporting codes have of late been undergoing intense training in preparation for the competition.

The 21 sporting codes include Athletics, Badminton, Basketball, Boxing, Canoeing, Cycling, Fencing, Football, Golf, Judo, Karate, Netball, Rowing, Rugby, Swimming, Table Tennis, Taekwondo, Tennis, Triathlon, Volleyball and Weightlifting.

“Gauging against our previous performance in Rabat 2010 where we fielded only 17 athletes and bagged six medals, one of which was awarded Nigel Amos, we are therefore optimistic that not only will we excel at these games but we are likely to unleash a lot more talent, especially from the essential grass roots level,” the Botswana team CDM said.

Nigel Amos is a typical example of raw talent from Botswana. Rabat 2010 was his first ever-international appearance and he bagged silver medal.

Two years later, Amos won Botswana’s first ever-Olympic medal. The African youth games will therefore serve as an excellent platform for building future Olympians. The competition acts as a yardstick that local coaches shall engage to groom young local athletes.

“Team managers, including coaches, Medical and Psychological support counsellors have been appointed for all the respective sporting codes, and they are using both local and international facilities to ensure that preparations for the games run smoothly and accordingly,” said Sitale.

He further explained that this is the appropriate time to undergo training as most if not all of the participants are currently on short vacation from their respective schools.

Meanwhile, BNOC Marketing and Communications Manager, Mpho Motlhabane, has called for more support from the public towards Team Botswana.

“I would like to take this opportunity to urge Batswana to support us, as this will boost the team’s morale and motivate them to make the nation proud. For the first time, we will get to view all sports competing against continental competitors at home.”

Motlhabane said the power of home ground advantage is evident in Multi Sporting events across the world.

“The London 2012 Olympic Games bears spectacular testimony to this, as the host nation tallied an impressively high medal record than in any of the previous years at similar events,” she said.

Motlhabane further said that there will be different media activations that they will engage to build awareness surrounding the games such as Team Botswana Fridays where they will be going around public venues to pump up crowds and rally supporters for the local athletes that will be competing in the competition. She encouraged people to volunteer however they can to ensure the games become a success.


Read this week's paper