Tuesday, December 7, 2021

BONA hunts for international coach ahead of Netball Youth World Cup

The Botswana Netball Association (BONA) is working around the clock to identify a suitable international coach who will lead the junior national team ahead of the World Youth under-21 netball games in 2017.

BONA President, Tebogo Lebotse-Sebego said even though the championships are slated for next year, time is of the essence as the team has to start preparations immediately so as to be in top form ahead of the world cup. BONA has already placed adverts in three countries from which they are hoping to snatch a proficient mentor.

“We advertised the post in three international markets; Australia, New Zealand and England in a bid to draw interest from international coaches. At this point we are still in assessing possible candidates,” Lebotse-Sebego said.

Meanwhile, the Botswana National Olympic Committee (BNOC) has pledged to help BONA with paying for the coaches’ salary. The Botswana netball team was assembled in the 2014 Africa Youth Games that were also held in Botswana. Additional players were selected at last year’s Botswana Games.

“We have always had a team that we were working with since the Africa Youth Games in 2014. The same team still qualifies for the world youth games. We also sent our representatives to identify raw talent and monitor players who are within our structures at last year’s Botswana Games in Francistown; and we are happy that we managed to identify good players that we will include in the national team,” said Lebotse-Sebego.

She further said they are looking for an individual who will assist in forging a strong team that will compete and represent the country beyond the 2017 world youth championships. Meanwhile, the chairperson of the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) Prisca Mokgadi said preparations for the youth world cup are on course.

“We want to leave a legacy of an indoor sports facility that will be used not only for netball but for all indoor sport events in Botswana by 2017. However we are not in a position to say we are putting something up in the moment. But it’s one of things we would like to have soon. We will also be approaching potential sponsors to support us in our quest to develop our sports facilities,” said Mokgadi.

Having succeeded in their bid to host the world youth under 21 netball games in 2017, Botswana will undergo a litmus test as it hosts the Africa Cup qualifiers this year in July. The qualifiers will feature 10 African nations that will compete for only three slots allocated for Africa. Botswana will automatically occupy one slot as the host prior to the 2017 world youth under 21 netball games. The qualifying games are billed for the University of Botswana’s newly built indoor sports facility in Gaborone.

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