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Rollers EXCO warns Shah

Township Rollers supremo, Jagdish Shah has been warned by the club’s committee responsible for societal affairs that he should not repeat the mistake of hiring a new coach without the input of the committee.  

Shah is the president of Rollers and also its financer. The committee recalls well last seasons’ conspiracies that were to see Rudolph Zapata ascending as the club head coach.  It is said this transpired against the will and advise of the committee that Zapata was not the kind of coach whom Rollers wanted.

It is said Shah first contacted Zapata on his own when he was a coach at AFC Leopards in Kenya, convincing him about the Rollers job. While the committee warned several times about Zapata, Shah proceeded to hire him. The employment of Zapata was concluded in United States of America.

While the Argentinean gaffer won the league and was a beaten finalist of the Orange FA cup, Rollers management could not extend his contract.  Their argument has always been simple that the former Gaborone United (GU) gaffer could not set a buccaneering tone left by his predecessor Nikola Kavazovic.

While Rollers is on the recruitment drive of a new coach, speculation is rife that Czech Republican coach Tomas Trucha is flirting with the team. Rollers management is aware of Shah’s influence but has vowed never to allow him repeat Zapata mistake. Trucha is the former Orapa United head coach and is believed to be a close friend of Shah. This on its own leaves the committee worried that Trucha might get the post. “We have been told that Shah is a close friend of Trucha but we do not want him to be obsessive to an extent of hiring him,” one committee member said.

All the while, Shah is reported to have refused to re-hire Kavazovic after the gaffer offered himself for the post. WeekendSport can authoritatively reveal that the team is negotiating terms with former Black Leopards coach Dylan Kerr. This is the second time that Rollers make contact with the coach. Before finally settling for Kavazovic two seasons ago, Kerr was also interviewed and was nearly appointed. However, there remains a strong possibility that Kerr might face a strong competition from one unnamed coach from Serbia. Rollers, it is said, are willing to agree a contract with him but his salary demands are way too high. Shah was not available for comment as he is out of the country.

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Orange injects P350 000 into Phikwe marathon

21st March 2023

Mobile network Orange Botswana is committed to supporting the development of local sport. Through its sponsorship, the company will be able to promote and market the sport. According to Maano Masisi, the company believes that sport can unite people from different backgrounds.

He stated that through the sponsorship of the marathon, the company will help promote healthy lifestyles and unity among the people of Selebi Phikwe.

The Selebi Phikwe Marathon is scheduled to take place on July 29, 2023. It is expected that it will attract international, regional, and social runners. A total of P216 000 has been allocated for the prize money for the first ten places in the 42.2 km race. For the 15km and 10km races, the LOC will give away prizes to the first five places.

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Big Guns for Botswana Grand Prix

20th March 2023

The National Stadium will be lit up with fireworks on April 29, 2023, as some of the best international athletes will participate in the maiden Botswana Grand prix.

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AFRICA’S RECOVERY: Sports as game changer

13th March 2023

The year 2022 witnessed unprecedented phenomena. Several Africans- Gotytom Gebreslase, Sharon Lokedi, Victor Kiplangat, Tamarit Tola and many others- swept the World’s marathons records.

However, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the resulting control measures implemented in several countries, led to many high-level sports competitions being cancelled or shelved, the Dakar 2022 Youth Olympic Games was moved to 2026.

Founder and Executive Chairman, African Sports and Creative Institute, Will Mabiakop, says the inability to hold traditional and amateur sports events have had a serious effect on public health overall, including mental health, sparking a revolution whereby athletes began to talk more openly about stress, mental overload and performance anxiety.

“Africa is home to the fastest growing economies before the crisis, no longer on track to meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). COVID-19 deepened interdependence between SDGs, making them harder to achieve, especially SDG 10 (reducing inequality) and SDG 5 (gender equality_ as the pandemic had a disproportionate impact on poorer countries, and heavier burdens (such as care work) fell to women.”

Mabiakop stresses that as policymakers contemplate actions to speed up recovery and build resilience, they must argue that sports and creative businesses should play a central feature in this effort.

“The sports economy worldwide is estimated at 5% of GDP, but only 0.5% in Africa. If exploited, Africa’s sports and creative industries can offer policymakers innovative solutions. Especially, as regards job creation, and providing employment to the 15 million people entering the job market annually.”


By leveraging the two-for-one concept: past studies shown that a 1% growth in the economy delivers a 2% job increment in this sector (these ratios are calculated using data from 48 African countries and adjusted to the reality of the sports economy in Africa by the authors). There are between 30 and 50 job types, in sports and creative industries, respectively. These jobs do not fade away with the first major shock.

Mabiakop indicated that policymakers can use these industries to tackle multiple crises- jobs, poverty, and climate risks. Sports diplomacy- defined as communication, representation and negotiation in or through the prism of sports- has proven effective in building inclusive and cohesive societies. Moreover, sports and the creative industry can support better mental health and well-being, both important for productivity.

“Policymakers can also be true to the game by leveraging culture and tradition to celebrate identity and reap commercial value in sports, textiles and jewelry. Creative sectors allow deeper connection with culture, are not easily copied and provide great economic potential.”

He said supporting grassroots sports has powerful distributional effects. “Fortunately, technology has made reaching wide audiences easier, generating higher rates of success when talent is discovered.”

However, Mabiakop held that potential pitfalls must be highlighted. “First avoid build it and they will come policies with infrastructures denuded from the rest of the ecosystem. Like the many sports stadiums left largely unused.”

“Policymakers must remain mindful of how these sectors move the needle in human capital development. Also, align the requisite public policies needed for progress from grassroots participation to professional sports, and even to international sporting events. They should also support investment instruments to render these sectors performant.”

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