Thursday, May 23, 2024

ODC’s sponsorship gives BTTA a lifeline 

Botswana Table Tennis Association (BTTA)’s endeavours to host successful Africa Youth Championships received a timely boost with a P250 000 sponsorship from the Okavango Diamond Company (ODC).

The sponsorship was unveiled at Ave Maria this past Monday by ODC Managing Director Mmetla Masire. The ODC Managing Director says the sponsorship ‘is dedicated towards facilitating the hosting of the Youth Africa Championship.’ 

He described the sponsorship as a show of dedication by ODC to ‘empower members of the sporting fraternity, particularly table tennis.’ Through the sponsorship, ODC is ‘facilitating the advancement of Botswana as a centre for showcasing culture and talent through sport and fostering growth within our communities.’ 

“We are excited to invest towards Botswana’s potential to become a prominent hub for international table tennis events. This sponsorship aims not only to provide exposure to our grassroots development athletes but also to empower our officials to meet international standards.” 

The ODC Managing Director said through the partnership, the diamond company aspires to help table tennis to nurture world class athletes who can put Botswana on the global map. He went on to add that the sponsorship is just one facet of the company’s ‘ongoing efforts to support our athletes and uphold the values of sportsmanship, dedication, and teamwork.’ 

“We believe in our athletes and trust that this sponsorship will go a long way in exposing them to international assignments where they will bring their A-game and win medals,” Masire said.

For his part, BTTA president Kudzanani Motswagole commended ODC for its commitment ‘to the development of table tennis in Botswana.’ According to him, the sponsorship ‘marks a significant milestone for BTTA as it strives to elevate table tennis in Botswana to new heights.’ 

The BTTA president said through this support, the association is confident that it can transform Botswana into a hosting hub for international table tennis events. He added that such would also provide exposure to the association’s grassroots development athletes and empower table tennis officials to meet international standards.

“Hosting international events not only showcases our country’s hospitality and organizational prowess but also provides our athletes with invaluable experience and exposure on the global stage. We believe that through hosting, we can nurture and develop medal-winning athletes who will proudly represent Botswana and bring home more medals from international assignments,” Motswagole said.

The championships will be hosted here in Gaborone from the 15th to the 21st of July this year. The International Table Tennis Federation sanctioned event is expected to draw participants from all over the African continent.

Participating countries are expected to compete in a total of fourteen (14) events. These will include U19 Boys’ and Girls Teams, U19 Girls’ Team (U19 GT), U19 Boys’ and Girls’ Singles, U19 Boys’ and Girls’ Doubles, U19 Mixed Doubles, U15 Boys’ and Girls’ Team, U15 Boys’ and Girls’ Singles, U15 Boys’ and Girls’ Doubles as well as U15 Mixed Doubles. 

Winners in the all the team events during the championship will qualify for the 2024 World Youth Table Tennis Championships Team events. On the other hand, the top two (2) players in the singles events during the championships will qualify for the 2024 World Youth Table Tennis Championships Singles events.

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