An experienced and highly qualified netball coach is being lined up to take charge of the junior netball national team ahead of the 2017 World Youth Netball Cup (WYNC) that the country will be hosting. The coach will be hired and paid for by the Botswana National Olympics Committee (BNOC). BNOC president Negros Kgosietsile announced this at the organisation’s annual general assembly on Monday. He said they have already sourced funding which will see not only netball benefiting but other codes such as volleyball as well.
According to Kgosietsile, Team Botswana needs to be strong and competitive during the games as the hosts to avoid disappointing spectators hence the need for a coach. The move by BONC falls well into their recent strategy of identifying and developing more girls in sport locally. “Getting netball a coach has been a neglected issue for a long time now and it needed to be addressed,” said Kgosietsile. The move has been welcomed by BONA officials who could not hide their happiness. They feel this will go a long way in helping the team become more competitive during the games. The Chairperson of the Local organising committee for the games Prisca Mokgadi applauded BNOC for the support they accord netball.
“The coach has come at the right time as the team has to compete to show the world what Botswana is all about. It will help us to do well during the competition,” said Mokgadi. BONA president Tebogo Lebotse-Sebego was also over the moon about the development. However while netball celebrated, boxing felt neglected. Botswana Boxing Association president Dr Thato Patlakwe questioned the criteria used to hire coaches for sport codes, arguing that his association also deserves a top coach as it has a great potential to do well regionally and internationally. “We have promising athletes who can do well regionally and internationally even at the Olympics and they need support. They need a top coach as well so that they can perform to their potential,” said Patlakwe. He said they have always asked for a coach from BNOC to no success.
Kgosietsile, however, claimed ignorance of this, saying it is his first time to hear of this. He said his office has never received the request. He nonetheless invited boxing officials to meet him and discuss their matter. “My door is always open not only for boxing but to every sporting code. If you are not happy with the secretariat you are free to come to me,” said Kgosietsile.