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BFA agrees terms with Amrouche

Adel Amrouche has concluded talks with Botswana Football Association (BFA) and will soon be revealed as the new coach to supplant Major David Bright – WeekendSport has established.

The Algerian- Belgium born gaffer was interviewed last week and agreed a three year contract that comes with a major responsibility of carrying the Senior National Team to the finals of AFCON 2021 to be held in Cameroon. The association is expected to make an announcement in the next coming days where interim coach Mgomotsi Mpote will take the assistant role on a permanent deal. However, BFA high ranking officials denied all reports linking Amrouche to the Zebras plum post.Maclean Letshwiti, the BFA boss together with his CEO Mfolo Mfolo, refused to confirm or deny the appointment of the Algerian whose last coaching task ended bitterly with the Desert foxes of Lybia.

Letshwiti when reached for comment said he is not the right person to talk about the appointment of a coach. He will later agree that recruitment is ongoing and the right panel will make recommendations as soon as the job is done. “I am sorry I am not the right person to be talking about the appointment of a coach, I have tasked team that will report to me as soon as they are done. But if they are done please ferry your questions to the CEO,” he said. But when Mfolo was contacted, the soft spoken CEO also declined to comment on Amrouche links. “I cannot discuss with the media issues that are contractually based. You will have to understand that some of the coaches who have applied are still contracted to other teams/ countries. So it is obvious that this will need high confidentiality until we are done,” he argued.

However, WeekendSport sources are adamant that BFA has finally settled for this gaffer despite the fact that he was not the kind of high profile appointment that was expected. Further scrutiny on Amrouche monthly wages was not successful, but it is said that the Belgian has asked more than what the BFA could bargain.
As the paper was going for print, nothing was established as to why the association had somersaulted on their initial thinking that former gaffer, Jesulic Vaselin was to take the reins. It is clear, however that finances have played part in BFA thinking to finally agree with Amrouche. According to information on his coaching resume, Amrouche began his managerial career in 1988 by coaching the youth ranks of local club OMR El Annasser while playing for the senior team.  He held the same role during his playing stints with USM Alger and RC Kouba.

In 2002, he was appointed as the manager of Congolese club Daring Club Motema Pembe. In 2007, Amrouche became the coach of the Burundi national football team. On 1 January 2011, Amrouche turned down an offer to take over the vacant managerial role of Algerian club ES Sétif, preferring to continue in his role with the Burundi national team. On 29 February 2012, Amrouche resigned as the manager of Burundi, just a day after a 2–1 win against Zimbabwe in the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers. In February 2013, Amrouche was named coach of the Kenya national football team taking over the position from James Nandwa who was there on temporary basis after the departure of Henri Michel. After 18 months at the helm, he was sacked on 3 August 2014 following Kenya's 1–0 aggregate loss to Lesotho in the second round of qualification for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations. He managed USM Alger in 2016. He became manager of the Libyan national team in May 2018. He resigned from the position in October 2018.
 

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Botswana ranked 4th in Zone 4 boxing tourney

4th May 2022
Boxing

The Botswana national boxing team recently returned from the zone 4 championship held in Mozambique. The team was led by head coach Thebe Setlalekgosi, two assistant coaches, Gibson Rauwe and Pearl Mooketsi. Two referees and judges, Gaseitsewe Ponatshego and Linda Mooketsi.

In the women’s category, Lethabo Modukanele was representing Botswana in the 48 kg division, while Phekie Bele and Sadie Kenosi were competing in the 57 kg and 60 kg categories, respectively. In the men’s category, Kobamelo Molatlhegi was representing the country in the 52 kg division, while Rajab Mahomed was competing in the under 51 kg category.George Molwantwa was competing for under 57 kg category and Treasure Moremi was competing for under 60kg category.

The boxers came home with seven medals, Modukanele came home with a gold medal, Kenosi, Rajab, Molatlhegi all came home with silver medals. While Moremi, Molwantwa and Phekie Bele all came home with bronze medals.

According to Moitshepi Nkabiti, the public relations officer of the Botswana Boxing Association, the team performed well and that they were hoping that Rajab would also bring home a gold medal. However, due to an eye injury, he could not participate in the finals.

He stated that, “though some people might think that how our team performed is not an achievement it is a big achievement to us. Other countries came with 19 boxers while we only came with our seven boxers, and they all came back with medals. That is something that we have to be proud of I really commend them for their performance. Having 5 players making it to the finals is really a blessing and we should not take it for granted.”

According to Nkabiti, Botswana was ranked fourth in the zone 4 championship, which was held in Mozambique. Other countries that participated in the tournament included South Africa, Zambia, Eswatini, and Seychelles. They all had a total of 19 boxers. Lesotho also had eight boxers.

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Mascom Charity Cup raised P500K

4th May 2022
Mascom Charity Cup

The first Mascom Charity Cup spectacular has come and gone. The football event played at Obed Itani Chilume Stadium saw four football clubs playing one-day tourney with various charity centres being beneficiaries of the gate takings.

While the attendance was not at the expected level, it is said that the sponsor has made a killing with close to P500 000 made from voting lines. Football followers were asked to vote for teams of their choice, and top four clubs were eligible to play. A single sms voting line cost P 1.50.

Gaborone United became the most voted team with 62 984 votes followed by Security Systems with 51 027. On the third spot was BDF XI with 48 596 votes while Orapa United came forth with 44 401. Shockingly, Township Rollers did not make it after gathering a total of 30 637 votes, with BR Highlanders ahead of them having seen 44 204 votes to their name.

It is said, however that, the initiative live to expectation as clubs together with the sponsor have managed to assist charities of their choices. Mascom is believed to be happy for identifying beneficiaries and getting value for their money.

The mobile network company is still the longest standing partners of local football, having first tasted waters in 2005. The company now powers the Top 8 competition and said to have renewed the dame sponsorship at a value not exceeding 18 million. The Mascom Charity Cup was not the first to be hosted by a mobile network company.

In 2018, Botswana Telecommunications Corporation (BTC) hosted a similar event in which followers had to vote. The four participating teams were Mochudi Center Chiefs, Gaborone United, Orapa United and Township Rollers. GU were the eventual winners.

It is however not clear if the tournament will continue in the next football calendar, but what goes down into the history books is that Teenage Mpote and Orapa United were the first to win it.
In previous years, there have been an off season tournament whose aim was meant for charity purposes. The tourney was called Kabelano Charity Cup and was usually played by four big teams (Rollers, Notwane, GU and Chiefs) without taking the voting routes. It was last hosted in 2015 and had Barclays as the sponsors.

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Golden boot race intensifies

4th May 2022
Sesinyi vs Kgamanyane

Yet another thrilling showdown is expected between the country’s hottest strikers, Thabang Sesinyi of Jwaneng Galaxy and Thataoyaone Kgamanyane of Gaborone United, as the duo are eyeing for the 2021/2022 Golden boot.

With only four Botswana Premier League (BPL) games left, the race for the honours is rolling towards a thrilling climax, but for two individuals there is a race for an accolade of their own taking place that could easily go down to the final minutes of the season. Leading the pack with 19 goals is Jwaneng Galaxy talisman, Sesinyi who is one goal apart from Kgamanyane who has netted 18 goals thus far.

Both players have their eye on the golden boot, hoping that their respective teams have fixtures to put them in with a realistic chance of catching up, or leaving the other behind. The Money Machine is currently at the summit of the BPL log with 61 points while the mining giant, Galaxy are trailing on the third place with 49 points, having played 24 games thus far.

Both teams (GU and Galaxy) are expected to face each other towards the end of the season, as the initial fixture was postponed due to Galaxy’s involvement in CAF championship group stages.
With 19 goals chalked up for the season so far, Sesinyi is just one goal away from Kgamanyane who led the race for the better part of the campaign.  Sesinyi who is on freakish scoring form has scored four goals in his last two games; a hat trick against Prisons XI and a goal against Sua Flamingoes in the midweek fixture.

But there is no doubt that  Sesinyi is no longer playing to carry his team, Galaxy, as realistically there is a slim chance for them to clinch the 2021/2022 season, but he is eyeing the Golden Boot Award when the league falls off.

Kgamanyane has begun the season in tremendous form; scoring every time he is given a chance, while Sesinyi, on the other hand, reached the peak of his form in the second round of the season; scoring both in the domestic league and also on the CAF Champions’ league group stage. He featured on team of the week on February.

Furthermore, the Money Machine attacker showed some growth as his conversion rate has been on a rising graph in the games he has so far played. Although Kgamanyane’s goal scoring prowess has been there for everyone to see, the player has been hampered by injuries. It promises to be a fascinating battle between the duo.

Meanwhile, BPL this week announced that they will hold the 2021/2022 awards. The league has since added seven new categories to take the total number of categories to 16. Among some new categories are the Defender of the Season and Midfielder of the Season awards. There are also two more awards for the administrators, as the league has included Team Manager of the Season and the Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the Season awards.

The best performing players in this campaign will be included in the Premier League Best XI.  Nevertheless, match day officials have also been recognised with the introduction of two more categories in the young Referee of the Season and the Female Referee of the Season. Furthermore, BFL CEO Solomon Ramochotlhwane indicated that the awards will be held on the 25 June 2022, just after the 2021-2022 season comes to an end.

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