Botswana Premier League champions will reportedly walk away with P1 million as prize money, despite the current campaign having kicked started without a title sponsor.
This publication learns that the champions of the 2021-22 season are likely to walk away with P 1 million. While this remains speculation for now, the move is seen as a major boast to the Premier League teams that are eyeing top spot. The football game needed to be played after facing a long hard year of lock down owing to the spread of COVID-19. Upon return, it became an almost impossible task to secure sponsors for the league that had recently gained autonomy.
Available funds gleaned from broadcast sponsor, BTV and Barclays bank were used to kickstart the league. The issue of prize money was averted at the initial stage to concentrate on monthly mobilization funds for teams to prepare and travel without incurring further costs. However, it is said that the league has managed to secure prize money and an announcement will be made as soon as everything is on place.
Before the spread of coronavirus that forced football into chains, the champions of the elite league were getting a whooping P 1.2 million. If the report that this year’s champions will walk away with a million pula are anything to go by, it will be seen as ‘a job well done’ from the board of the BFL.
The board will stand on the ground of optimism following previous seasons of failure and embarrassment. Before the season was halted, there was no prize money as the then title sponsors, Botswana Telecommunication Corporation (BTC) had to reduce sponsorship value from the P 14M per season to a paltry P 5M.
By the time, BTC was livid that there was no gain in powering local football, as spectators were not coming to the stadiums. The sponsor also expressed concern that their contract with the football association was not adhered to. BTC, among other things, had wanted to push their airtime vouchers through football. But even after making such arrangement, there was no improvement, hence calling for contract termination.
However, either of Gaborone United or Township Rollers are in pole position to claim the P1 million prize. GU are at the apex of Premier League standing, followed by Rollers. At the time of print, there is a 1-point difference between the two teams, and it is anybody’s guess as to will eventually win it.
The other positions on the log tables are yet to be awarded the prize money, but informants say the number 2 team is likely to get P750 000 and other positions, especially from spot number 8 will likely get an equivalent share.
Nobody from the BFL is reachable for comment but the league chief executive officer, Solomon Ramochotlhwane was quoted live on Btv saying “the champions are likely to get P 1M as the prize money.” He said this few minutes before Gaborone derby played at Obed Itani Chilume stadium where GU won the encounter by a solitary strike of inform striker, Thatayaone Kgamayane.
The Manchester United defender will now focus on his club career having made 93 caps for France, appearing at three world cups and on European championship. The Les Bleus won the World cup in 2018 and Raphael Varane started all but one of Franceâ€™s matches in Qatar as they finished as runners up to Argentina
With many being of the view that the state of football in Botswana has deteriorated significantly as it is no longer appealing to the business community, this was a good week for the football community. The Botswana Football Association (BFA) leadership under the stewardship of MacLean Letshwiti secured sponsorship for a combined value of P19. 3 million for the FA Cup competition and the First Division league – both South and North.