Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Local athletes tumble at All Africa games

Botswana teams are on a down ward spiral at the on going All Africa Games (AAG) in Algeria. A lot was expected from the boxing team taking into account their performance at the Zone VI tournament that was held earlier in the year. The local boxers nearly swept the boards at the Zone VI but they left a lot to be desired at the AAG. What is even surprising is that most local boxers lost to the pugilists they always defeat in the regional tournaments.

Herbet Nkabite is the only boxer who qualified for the finals that were supposed to be played yesterday; and was scheduled to sweat it out with a Zambian opponent. A shoulder injury prevented Khumiso Ikgopoleng to qualify for the finals and only settled for a bronze medal. Other boxers like Gomotsang Gaasite, Thato Batshegi and Koolopile Gabaikangwe lost from the onset.

Even though the volleyball team was in group of death they also failed to win a single game of the five games they played. Despite the losses, one of the local players Shadrack Kapeko was singled out as one of the best attackers of the games. He was one of those players that scored more points.

Meanwhile, the sports development officer of the Botswana Volleyball Federation, Mission Mereyotlhe has hailed the team despite failing to qualify for the next round. He said even though volleyball is won on sets the local players scored significant points.
“We were indeed in a group of death. The countries we played against are seasoned campaigners who play in various international tournaments quite often.

But somehow I am happy with the performance of our players; they displayed character and did not respect their opponents. In most of the games we managed to win some sets and those we lost were not with a huge margin. Our losses were not really bad,” he said.
Mereyotlhe was however hopeful that in the coming Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), the Botswana team will do well. He said the games helped the team to learn from their mistakes and will revenge at the AFCON tournament.
The AFCON tournament will be played in two months time.

The going was not even smooth sailing for the chess team. They won their first game only to wilt in the next games.

All eyes will now also be trained on the 4x100m relay team that has qualified for the finals. The relay team, however, qualified by a whisker after finishing in fourth position. They were considered the best losers and given a passage to the finals.

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The Telegraph October 21

Digital edition of The Telegraph, October 21, 2020.