The agreement between three boxing associations of Botswana, Lesotho and South Africa may be headed for doom. The buoyancy initially expressed by the partners when signing the agreement is reportedly already fading away, barely 3 months down the line.
The agreement which was signed in June was expected to help the three countries in terms of boxing (youth) development, women boxing as well as the national teams’ development. This was to be achieved through the regular interaction of the three boxing bodies.
However, since the agreement, the countries have not yet reaped any of the fruits, save for Lesotho, who has “benefited enormously” from the last two meetings.
Only two tournaments have been hosted thus far, and both were staged by the Botswana Boxing Association (BoBA) who had invited both Lesotho and South Africa to the competitions that were held at the University of Botswana. Despite both countries being sent invites, only Lesotho pitched up, with South Africa missing both games. South Africa reportedly fielded “lack of finances to bring the team to Gaborone” as reasons for consecutively failing to honour invites by BoBA.
Naysayers are already predicting doom for the trio’s union. Since the last game, and lack of show by South Africa, all has gone cold and no other tournament has been hosted.
After managing to cajole the two associations to sign on the dotted line, it is said the local association was all smiles as theirs was a calculated move to benefit from South-Africa whose facilities and development structures are envied by many.
“South- Africa was the main target in this agreement so that local boxing can benefit from them by camping there and utilising the available boxing amenities, but they are now dragging their feet in making the project pragmatic,” said one of the pro-idea at BoBA.
Information presented to this publication by those in the know portrays a marriage on the brink of collapse as the main reason South-Africa is not “willing” to honour the agreement is that they now believe the relationship will be parasitism instead of symbiotic as expected. SA considers the local standard as very “armature”.
However the BoBA President Dr Thato Patlakwe has refuted claims that the relationship is now rocky, “all is well, the mutual agreement is on course and we are on regular communication with our co-partners.” He further added, “the reason why the local clubs couldn’t camp there (SA) is because as BoBA we had already devised a plan of how we will do our things.”
When quizzed further on the development and women boxing, Patlakwe blamed poor development structures locally, however young boxers have been nurtured ever since Patlakwe assumed power last year and women in boxing are also active. Although the President vehemently said they keep in touch with their counterparts, some at the boxing office are saying there is no communication within the parties.
Patlakwe went on to confidently reveal that the next session of the relationship will be in November. Currently local boxers are still sweating to book themselves a ticket at next year’s Olympic Games in Brazil.
Athletics is one of the sporting activities that for many years has been consistently performing extremely well in international competitions. One of the reasons is the availability of qualified and experienced coaches, who have been working tirelessly on the ground to ensure that they scout talent and develop more athletes.
For the first time after eons, football clubs plying their trade in the elite league are walking in the shadow of the undefined with nothing concrete agreed and on sight before the commencement of the football season.