The Botswana Boxing Association (BoBA) has released boxers in the national team camp following the postponement of this year’s Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games due to coronavirus. Following a single qualification to the Tokyo sporting extravaganza, the local boxing association was hoping for a last bet for the Olympic qualification event that was slated for May in France.Following the Africa qualifying championship held early this year in Senegal, only Keamogetse Kenosi qualified for the Tokyo Olympics in the female boxer category. The team that was on camp comprised of three male and two female boxers in the likes of Rajab Mahommed, Tefo Maitewa, George Molwantwa, Keamogetse Kenosi and Aratwa Kasemang.
While Kenosi emerged the only boxer to make it to the sporting extravaganza slated for Tokyo, BoBA’s expected to qualify more numbers for the event following extensive training camps across the globe in the past few months. After extensive preparations, BoBA expectations were that on form Mahommed should have qualified for the event, however failing to make the cut at the recently ended African qualifiers.Speaking to The Telegraph, BoBA mouthpiece Taolo Tlouetsile said they had to release boxers from camp following the International Olympics Committee (IOC) decision to postpone the games. “There is still a World pandemic that has affected all sporting events. We still had hope to qualify more athletes especially at the qualifying stage in France. We had sent seven athletes at the qualifiers in Senegal and managed to qualify one and believe we can still qualify more,” said Tlouetsile.
He said despite qualifying a single boxer at the moment is still an achievement following a no show at the Rio Olympics in 2016. “We didn’t qualify for the past Olympics but this time around we have qualified one and hoping for more. The coach recommended four boxers to continue working hard for a place at the games. We have since taken a break from camp and hope to return when the pandemic stabilizes and work on qualifying more boxers for the games rescheduled for next year,” narrated Tlouetsile.