Wesbank

Bakwadi Tokyo 2020 campaign

SHARE   |   Wednesday, 02 May 2018   |   By Ontametse Sugar
Bakwadi Bakwadi

He is one of the most zealous athletes, and he has shown over the years that he has the potential to go far in the sport. Botswana has never had a representative in karate at the Olympics, and Ofentse Bakwadi is gearing towards going to participate in the Olympics in 2020. Ofentse Bakwadi and his supporters have gone on a campaign dubbed Ofentse Bakwadi Road to 2020.

The leader of the campaign Kesego Okie said that considering how exceptional and what a hard worker Bakwadi is it important that everyone takes part in making his dream a reality. As the team they are on a mission to raise funds for Sensei Shaykex Cash Ofentse as he is fondly known so that he can be able to participate in the preceding tournaments known in karate as the K1s. “We are doing this so that he can be able to incredibly increase his chances of representing Botswana at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and we want to him to be able to train internationally,” Okie said. Okie emphasised that with this being the first under the Botswana banner and even highly possible because of Bakwadi’s standings, it is important that companies and individuals come forward to make this a reality.

 Bakwadi is the reigning Africa Champion and he is the reigning Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC) Sportsman of the year having won the award in the year 2017. Okie said they are on a mission to help him attend all the impending K1 practices that will be taking place in Germany, Chile, and Japan among others.  She said that they want transparency in what they are doing, and that is why they will unveil all the cost according to each K1 that will be taking place so that whoever wants to assist can see where they can assist and at which time. They have made packages of sponsorships for those corporates who are wishing to take part, and she implored upon individuals not to leave that to the corporate world but assist wherever they can too. Bakwadi is currently in position 41 in world rankings, making him to be part of the top 100, and the team believes that with the participation in the K1 events there is a very high chance of him going up the ranks which will then make him very competitive at the Olympics. “These pre matches are totally critical in getting our athlete ready and please let us help him achieve his dream while at the same time achieving a dream for Botswana,” she said. The team is looking for money to assist him in the K1s only, because upon qualification Bakwadi will then be sponsored by the mother bodies to go and compete in the Tokyo Olympics since he will be representing Botswana.

Bakwadi has been a trailblazer and has been doing incredibly well in his soaring karate career, where under his belt he has also won Gold before in the UFAK championships, and as such making him the first black African to hold the title. His karate career started from quite a very young age. He is one person who values so much training in karate, and that is why he believes that if Batswana can give him all the support he can definitely go to Tokyo 2020 and unquestionably surprise people. “This is a game of training and fitness, and I believe if given the chance that I am pleading for then we can definitely all come together and be part of this history that we want to make for Botswana,” he said. He emphasised he does not want to go  to the Olympics to just participate but he wants to go there and have his presence felt, and he is never one to be scared of his opponents because he believes in himself f and that is what has propelled him in his career over the years,.