The rugby season has recently kicked off and though it is still without a sponsor, it looks to have improved a great deal.
BDF cheetahs and Gaborone Hawks have already started opening the gap between themselves and other teams as they have not lost a single match this far. At the time of going to press, the two teams were sweating it out against each other.
The Vultures assistant coach, Andrew Paxinos, said he has noticed big improvements amongst the A division side on the tactical aspects of the game. He cited BDF and Gaborone Hawks who he said have improved a great deal in possession. He said that BDF teams, which are three in the A division, have improved considerably well, aided by the available facilities at their disposal. The teams generally are outstanding in terms of physical built, which is an important aspect for the contact sport.
The coach said that BDF teams’ squads have grown as well as other teams as they benefit from Students who finish their studies and join the Division teams. Currently, the sport is played by 96 schools country wide, a thing which the coach said ensures development at an early age and added that by the time they play in the two divisions, they will have mastered the basics.
The players who have been exceptional since the beginning of the season include, BDF Cheetahs’ Kabo Batsile, who is a flank, Hugo Botho a fly half, who has been impressive as his team decision maker and, Gaborone Hawks’ Shathiso Ntibi.
Other players who have done well include all those who recently made it to the national 37 man squad that was announced last week. The team has been assembled in preparation of the World Cup qualifiers that will kick off in June. Should the Vultures qualify, they will stand a chance to advance to the Super division, which has countries like South Africa, Argentina, New Zealand and others.
Last year, the vultures advanced to the A division, which is only a step before the Super Division. Currently, South Africa is the only African country in the Super Division. The two teams from the division that have qualified for the next World Cup are Namibia and Uganda and they will be hoping to advance to the next level.
Paxinos also said that they are still on the lookout for a potential sponsor. The league and the National team have been sponsored before by Orange and KBL. The League also seems to have suffered the closure of Stadia as they used to use the UB Stadium as their main arena. The Botswana National Sports Council Gym too was closed as renovations on the National Stadium have has also affected the league’s players. The players now have to go to a Gym in Phakalane where Paxinos revealed some players actually do not make it as they sometimes do not have enough taxi fare.
The list of Vultures players is as follows:
Kabo Batsile, Eddie Enerst, Gilbert Machobane, Kaone Gopolang, Thabo pollen Gugah, Omphile Peace Kebobate, Victor O Lajini, Modisaotsile Rakgomo, Gobotswang Baleseng, Kebatho Sexhikao, Bankutletse Bodibenyane, Mandla Masabasa, Daniel Nthutelang, Thamile Lesang, Elijah Radihepi, Ketshidile Matenanga, Ryan o’ Shaughnessy, Andre Van Der Walt, Shaun Watson, Louis Marear, Tebogo Masinki, Biki Mawela, katlego Mhutshiwa, Thato Maijala, Jarome Alabu, Gilbert Peackok, Tshoganetso Katse, Lesedi Keekai, Munya Mhonda, Thatoyaone Malele, Onkabetse Mosalagae, Mark Colley, Tyrone W, Fred Van Vuren, Shatiso Ntibi, Molebi Maphanyane, Johan Van Niekerk, Hugo Botha, Thabo Maundeni, James Harris, Voyosile Moyo, Jeremy Babage, Edward Oostuizen Edson Faustino.