Botswana Softball Association senior men’s national team has made history at the ongoing XV Men’s Softball World Championships in Canada by qualifying for the quarter finals stage, the first time in history that Botswana has done so.
Botswana finished the first round ties in fourth place with Czech Republic and Denmark, all three having won three games and losing four.
Botswana had the least runs against; the team conceded one compared to the other two teams which conceded three, and this gave the locals the edge to go through to the last 8.
In their campaign Botswana beat Great Britain 1-0, lost to Japan 8-0, lost to Denmark 1-0, beat Turkey 21-0 nil, beat Czech Republic 1-0, lost to Venezuela 7ÔÇô1 and lost to New Zealand 27-0.
BSA Marketing and Public Relations Officer Kelebogile Seitei said they were happy to have made history by advancing to the next stage of the tournament.
“We are glad for the team to have qualified for the first time to the quarterfinals. We started preparations late and the boys fought hard against the best to make the historic appearance with the top eight teams,” Seitei said.
The delighted Seitei said the from the quarterfinals stages they expected the teams to continue doing better and staying longer in the tournament will be a bonus to their expectations.
Seitei further explained that before the tournament Botswana was ranked lowest, at 19.
By Friday, Botswana pitcher Kagiso Mogale was leading with 52 strike-outs, making him the best pitcher in the world so far. This took place during a pitcher’s duel between Mogale and Britain’s Kyle Linton from the start. Both pitched complete games, but Mogale came away with the win and a no-hitter. It was an unfortunate loss for Linton, who struck out 18 in the game.
Botswana team manager Gloria Gaosikelwe said the victory had done a lot of good to the morale of her team and hoped this would have them gain momentum going forward.
“The boys are over the moon because of the victory. They deserved the win because they had worked really hard from the beginning of the competition till now,” said an excited Gaosikelwe.
By the time Sunday Standard went to print the Botswana men’s softball team was set to meet Argentina in the quarterfinal on Friday evening.
Gaosikelwe said if the performance of her team so far was anything to go by, she was optimistic that the boys would do well