Botswana National under 23 Ladies Volleyball Team will embark on a week-long training camp in preparation for the African Nations Championship qualifiers that are billed for Kenya, Nairobi on the 18th to 28th of October.
The training camp started this past Monday at Botswana University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (BUAN) in Sebele.
The provisional team, which comprises of 20 girls from different local teams, is under the watchful eyes of coaches Moses Thengelani and Dopp Popo.
According to Botswana Volleyball Federation (BVF) Sports Development Officer Peaceful Seleka, the team will undergo an intensive training before it is trimmed down.
“Out of the provisional team we have called, only 12 players will be selected to represent the country in Kenya. No one in our preliminary team is specifically guaranteed a place in the national team and everyone will have to fight for her place. We expect to see the girls put up a real fight for places in the final team as all players called have been active in the league and are very fit,” he said.
To ensure proper monitoring, the BVF SDO said the team will be periodically called into camp.
“They will be called into camp time and again for us to monitor them closely. Our intention is to ensure that they do not lose focus or their playing positions at club level. We believe that keeping them active in the league will guarantee that we will be taking a very strong and physically fit team to Kenya,” added Seleka.
The competition, which will be held at the Kasarani Indoor Stadium in Nairobi, Kenya, will pit Botswana girls against the likes of Kenya, Egypt, Algeria, Tunisia, Cape Verde, Senegal and Rwanda.
The winner of the competition will qualify to represent the continent at the U-23 World Championship which billed for Slovenia next year.
Meanwhile, the local boys’ Under 23 team is also expected to take part in a similar tournament at a time and venue yet to be announced. The uncertainty over the boys’ tournament’s venue and time comes after initial hosts South Africa pulled out of hosting the competition.
Seleka confirmed that the males’ team is also on standby to commence training as soon as the venue and other issues related to the boys’ tournament are resolved.
“Our boys’ team is also ready, but they have been since put on hold due to this inconvenience of venues, the tournament was supposed to be staged at South Africa in Durban but now we are yet to be informed of the new venue,” he explained.