After a successful prize giving ceremony to close the end of last season, the new season of the darts league will resume next week.
The league will run from May 5th to November 20th.
Botswana Darts Association (BODA), which is an affiliate of the Botswana National Sports Council (BNSC), announced the imminent start of the new league at a prize giving ceremony held in Gaborone at the Prisons Mess.
BODA Secretary General, Bonnake Pebe, told Sunday Standard that the league is self sponsored because they are yet to get sponsors.
“Our league is sponsored by the players. At times some companies do help us with finance. The players regularly make contributions to help the league run smoothly,” he said.
At the prize giving, Pebe was awarded a trophy for the highest close plays for a team called Bonatla, which came sixth in the league.
Letlhogela Mosepele of BDF A, was awarded monetary prize of P2 564 for the player with most 180s. Only two women managed to score 180 and they were both awarded monetary prizes. The team that scooped first prize won P2991 whilst the last team was compensated with P748. Pebe further told Sunday Standard that the public still lacks information about darts sports and many associate it with alcohol.
Pebe further said that traditionally darts are played in bars or public places due to the fact that initially soldiers used darts to show off their skill of archery, of who can hit the centre of the board with one dart.
At the time, the dart boards were made out from beer barrel bottoms.
As the sport got popular, some people took it to the commercial level that it finds itself in currently. Darts were introduced in Botswana by a group of men, among them Tom Ferreira, in September 1983.
Darts is formally registered and has signed with BNSC anti-doping initiatives to try and curb alcohol and drugs use in the sport.
Over the years BODA enjoyed sponsorship form KBL, which parted ways with them in 2003. To date the sport is not sponsored by any company. The darts national team has in the past participated in the zone six competitions, and they have never obtained anything lower than third position. Last year the junior team went to Zambia for the zone six competitions and came back with four silver medals and six bronze medals. BODA has so far introduced the sport in more than 13 schools both primary and secondary in the Northern region of Botswana.
BODA also has coaching clinics for students and teachers. The next coaching clinic for teachers will be held in June 19-27. During this years’ financial budget BODA received P125 000 from BNSC, which they say is not enough due to the economic crunch.
The money is used for many things, including raising public awareness. Due to financial constraint, the association will not fulfil its entire mandate. BODA is also trying to organise fund raising activities to boost its financial status.