Fresh from their successful trip to Zimbabwe for a friendly match, the Botswana Table Tennis national team will be hosting a four-team tournament featuring South African, Botswana team B and a team of Chinese nationals residing in Botswana in friendly games this coming weekend.
The games are part of the team’s preparations for the upcoming All Africa Games billed for Mozambique in early September.
Against South Africa, the team will be trying to gauge their strength against the best team in the Southern African region as they fine tune their performance before the Africa games begin in about three weeks. According to Tiro Motswasele of the Botswana Table Tennis Association (BTTA), the team had a very good trip to Zimbabwe where they beat the Zimbabwean national table tennis team 3 ÔÇô 1 and 3 ÔÇô 0 in both the men and ladies’ events, respectively.
They will be hoping to put the same display against their South African counterparts.
“In our region, we are ranked second behind South Africa. They are a very strong team and will give us a taste of what to expect from the best of African teams during the All Africa games,” Motswasele said in an interview.
The BTTA spokesperson says the South Africans will be bringing their best team for the tournament as they are also trying to prepare for the all Africa Games.
Concerning the weekend tournament, Motswasele says the games will start with team events which will then be followed by individual events. “The team events will be played in a round robin system. All the teams will play against each other with the team that accumulates more points winning the tournament,” Motswasele added.
However, Botswana’s eyes will be set in the individual events where four national team players expected to go for the all Africa games will be competing.
The four are Boitshwarelo Butale and Matshidiso Osi in the ladies category as well as Bonolo Mabote and Dafrien Goppani in the men’s category.
“We will only be taking four players to the All Africa Games as per the games’ organising committee requirement for all countries taking part. Unfortunately, this means that there will be no team events as more than six players per team are required for that kind of event,” Motswagole said.
The weekend’s tournament is expected to start on Saturday at 10 O’clock in the morning and to come to an end on midday Sunday. The games are expected to take place at the University of Botswana’s Faculty of Engineering and Technology (FET) hall.