Gunners dismantle Magosi camp
Wanted: Tendai Nyumansi
Lobatse based outfit, Extension Gunners are onto dismantling the Mochudi Centre Chiefs camp. Gunners has stepped up their game and are coming after the Mochudi based side’s players.
Acquiring Mara Moloi’s signature was not quite enough as now the team is going after Tendai Nyumansi and Lesego Galenamotlhale.
The duo of Lesego Galenamotlhale and Tendai Nyumasi will be out of contract when the current season comes to an end, reports say. It is believed that the allure of Extension Gunners runs deeper and the duo, should Chiefs fail to match Gunners’ offer, will be glad to join their former teammates in Moloi and Moemedi Moatlhaping.
Gunners, as led by an unnamed Swazi business tycoon, are tipped to be the busiest club in the transfer market, and are expected bolster even their technical team. There are still varying reports as to whether Chico Nare will be the club assistant coach or may take the seat of the head coach next season.
It is believed that both players believe Gunners, as one of the country's oldest clubs, is now capable of competing for the grandest prizes. In the event of leaving Chiefs, whom they joined with the aim of winning silver ware, their dreams of playing for a rich paying club will be a reality.
No doubt that they have enjoyed their years at Magosi, but reports say they feel that the time is right to move on. It is impossible to dispute the value and service that they have given to the club, with last season being their best. Twice Magosi have won the premier league title with them, and last season, Galenamotlhale was voted player of the season.
Nyumasi, too, became an instrumental cog of Magosi, particularly when the tiring legs of Captain Pontsho Moloi could not help.
However, those close to developments say that the duo will be horrified by Chiefs/Gunners’ intransigence. The Chiefs’ management has a reputation as a tough negotiator but to them, the offer from Gunners is one that should be impossible to refuse.
Given the conditions at Chiefs, where players are not given signing on fees or bonuses, those close to the players cannot believe that Chiefs will be blocking what could be an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for talents which are nearing their expiry dates.
It is believed that Chiefs is merely maintaining that their prized assets are not for sale particularly to Extension Gunners. In all essence, the attacking midfielders’ worthiness to the Kgatleng giants is obvious, but the versatile players might as well be feeling that there comes a point when it is unfair to hold somebody to the terms of his contract. Their deals with Magosi are expiring with the season, and reports say talks are yet to be opened.
The situation is not yet explosive but it is believed to have put the Kgatleng giants under immense pressure and is threatening to turn ugly. Chiefs’ Communications Manager Clifford Mogomotsi said that they expect to open talks with all players whose contracts are coming to an end this season, and it is anybody‘s guess that they will be able to ignore the pull of Mapantsula.
‘‘No, you should remember the season is still on, we will sit down with all our players and open talks for possible extensions, we have to start preparing for competitions for next season,’’ he said.
Centre Chiefs is seen to have been exasperated at the persistent questions over their player's future, and they have toed the line about the midfielders not being available for business and they repeatedly stated that it is impossible for a deal to be struck with a rival club.
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AFRICA’S RECOVERY: Sports as game changer
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.”
HOW CAN THE INDUSTRY DO THIS?
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.”