Letlapeng readies for premier league

SHARE   |   Sunday, 20 July 2014   |   By Othusitse Tlhobogang

The recently promoted Letlapeng Football Club’s preparations for elite football in the 2014/2015 season are in full swing. Letlapeng chairperson Kabo Mogagane told this publication that preparations are going very well and they are confident that by the beginning of the season the team will be ready for the challenge.

Even though Mogagane could not disclose much about the preparations he said they are currently in talks with some possible sponsor to help the team financially. Mogagane revealed that in a few weeks they will announce everything ranging from the sponsorship to the beefing up of the squad to be able to compete well in the highest division in the country.

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However a source close to the team has hinted that transport mogul and Ramotswa resident Seabelo Tlhaselo could be one of the sponsors roped in to boost the team financially. Tlhaselo had already pledged P10 000 for the team and to help install a telephone for them. The source further revealed that Tlhaselo is also fancied to also come handy in transporting the team to their games.  Playing in the premier league requires a lot of money as it involves too much travelling. This is why it is important for a team to have a dedicated sponsorship unlike in the first division were they can manage without one.

It has emerged that even though the league will soon start the Ramotswa based team has not yet chosen a home ground as they are still awaiting Botswana Premier League’s response on the matter. The chairperson said they have suggested to BPL that their first choice home ground is Otse Police College if it is available with the second being in Gaborone then Lobatse opposed to Molepolole. He said “this is because Otse is nearer to Ramotswa. However we are waiting to hear from premier league on this”. Since the Otse Police College ground has not been used during the previous season the team may find it themselves having to travel to either Gaborone or Lobatse for the home games. The Ramotswa based outfit however has hopes of one day playing their home games in their village. At the teams’ prize giving ceremony held a week ago in Ramotswa Tlhaselo urged the team to go find out what is required to have their games played in Ramotswa. Tlhaselo said playing in Ramotswa would help Balete benefit as they can make money from the visiting teams through food sales just like in other areas.

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Mogagane revealed that it is their wish to have their home games played in Ramotswa in the near future. “If everything goes well we want to play our games in Ramotswa and the target is that this happens by January next year,” he said.  However the team will have to make sure that they have a playing facility that meets BPL required standards to hold premier league games. BPL Chief Executive Officer Bennet Mamelodi explained that for a pitch to host such games it has to be in compliance with the minimum set standards. Mamelodi said this include that the field has to have a grass, security fence around it, stands and dressing room.

Nonetheless last season there was a case which caused uproar in the footballing fraternity when Swallows grounds in Palapye held premier league games. The pitch was not grassed and at times it would be closed during rainy season as it became waterlogged.  On this issue Mamelodi explained that a special dispensation was issued to use the ground for one year looking at how the teams in the area were struggling. The premier league CEO went on to say that for a team to use a certain ground for their home games they would need to have solid reasons for such and the ground must meet the requirements. “If football in the country has to grow even the sporting facilities should commensurate this growth,” said Mamelodi.

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Letlapeng FC breaks into the elite premier league after a long and tough fight in and out the pitch. The team had a very tough competition to finish first in the log. When they thought all was over a tedious case arose in which they were accused of using a defaulter in a game between them Black Forest. Though the case went through twists and turns to finish it was dismissed in favour of Rock of Ages as Letlapeng is affectionally known to its supporters.



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