It remains to be seen how the countries’ representatives at the Zone 6 Volleyball championships will fare as the sport is struggling to get its leagues going.
Following the withdrawal of Mascom Wireless sponsorship, the once promising code is now in a quandary as there is uncertainty surrounding its league.
The absence of the league has led to inactivity among players, something which is a concern for teams like Kalavango Ladies Volleyball Club and Police VI who will be Botswana’s ambassadors at the Zimbabwe bound Zone 6 Championships in December later this year.
Kalavango ladies booked their berth at the regional volleyball showpiece after winning the 2017 edition of the annual Capital Motors BMW. The local lasses are said to be the only female team representing Botswana at these games, including the Police VI.
Speaking in an interview, Kalavango Volleyball Club Public Relations Officer (PRO) Monica Alfred, said despite the exposure to international games, the absence of the league is a major concern ahead of the games.
She said, “These year there is no league, and it affects our preparations for the Zone 6 games. Our players are inactive, rusty and could use some training.”
To mitigate this, Alfred says they will be organizing a volleyball tournament scheduled for October 28th. The Kalavango PRO says the main aim of the tournament will be to give the girls the much needed match practice and training.
Adding to their woes, Kalavango PRO disclosed that they are also struggling financially. “We need money or at least sponsors, because we have to provide funding for the girls so they can partake in the games.”
She said the team management was working round the clock to raise funds, and they can only hope for the best as they embark on the journey.
“We cannot say we are going to win zone 6 games, neither will we lose. We are going to fight really hard to make ends meet and try make Batswana proud in the process,” she added. Alfred said she was optimistic that the girls will give it their best shot and put their all into preparing for the games as they are brimming with determination and enthusiasm.
The same sentiments were shared by the country’s other representative at the Zonal games, Police VI, also the Zone 6 defending champions.
Speaking in an interview, Police VI’s Shimaka Ngwanaotsile says it has not been a busy year for the team as well due to the collapse of the league. He however said the team had not stopped training, as their aim is to win the Zone 6 cup.
He said, “I am drilling the guys preparing them for the cup. I want them to be in tip top shape and state. The teams that compete in these games are the best clubs from each zone and each team wants to win. As such, it is not easy to win the cup.”
He disclosed that he has recruited two players from Kutlwano club, Tiroyaone Otimile, Lebogang Mabote as well as a setter from Spiking stars Phenyo Thebeng. The trio are said to be doing well with the team and are showing great commitment. Ngwanaotsile says they have changed their style of play and that will benefit them at the zonal championships.