Botswana Judo Federation (BJF) has said they are geared at representing Botswana at the Olympic Games in 2012.
BJF President, Mrs. Estony Hattingh, told the Sunday Standard that the qualification systems for the 2012 Olympics games start in May 2010.
“The qualification system is based on points and there are competitions put in place by the International Judo Federation (IJF) which must be attended to attain those points,” Hattingh said.
According to the IJF, Judo will have a total of 386 starting places in the 2012 Olympic Games and the general rules are that the qualification will go directly to a Judoka not to a nation and there will also be a maximum of one Judoka per category per country.
Hattingh further explained that if the athletes qualify in the top 22 in the world, they automatically go to the Olympic Games and then they work on the Continental places, asserting that the African Judo has a total of 24 places, 14 male and 10 female.
“The African Judo Union has a total of 24 places, 14 male and 10 female, they work through the ranking list and the 47 African countries that are ranked the highest will get a place. So if a Botswana player does not qualify in the top 22 then they go further down the list and if he is in the top 24 African countries he shall be selected,” she said. She noted that an African Judo Union ranking is created using the World Ranking List – sorted by the highest points across all categories and gender.
“The players are identified by following the Union ranking from top to bottom until all places of the Union quota for men and women are allocated,” Hattingh added.
She gladly noted that she has faith in her team in participating in the Olympics, adding that she especially feels Advent Monyatsiwa will definitely make it to the top 22.
“I personally feel that Monyatsiwa will be in the top 22 and we will have another player from the continental quota. But this can only be achieved if we give our athletes the means to represent Botswana,” she said, adding that their major challenge is funds. He noted that the athletes need financial assistance due to the number of competitions they have to attend in order to qualify.
“Unfortunately, only two of the qualifying events are on the African Continent, and that is not cheap,” Hattingh said.