Lack of facilities is the biggest challenge
The Botswanan Badminton Association (BBA) have yet again taken a decision to postpone hosting this year’s Botswana Closed Championship. Botswana Closed Champs is one of the most anticipated events in the BBA calendar. It is the last local championship before the International series (Botswana International). The tournament is also used to rank players locally.
According to the BBA calendar of events, it was scheduled to take place late last month (August), but was moved to September. It is said that the association could not secure the venue to host the games, hence the decision to postpone.
BBA Public Relations Officer (PRO) Barulaganyi Ncube has revealed that the championship will once again be postponed (September to October). “Our plan was to host the Botswana Closed as per schedule and according to our calendar. We first proposed the 24th -26th August 2018,” Ncube told Gazette Sport.
“We are now hoping to host it at least host it early October. Our main challenge has been lack of facilities, we have been using the Lobatse and Tsholofelo Halls, but we were informed that they had already been booked, and we could not afford the BUAN Hall because it is very expensive. However we are confident we will host the Closed Champs, our events manager is working on it and we will do anything possible to host even if it means we take it to Lobatse or any other places. At the end we will come up with something that will benefit us all.We will try to cut on the budget in order to prioritize,” He said the association will be having an Executive Meeting this week, and thereafter a date for the event will be finalized.
Meanwhile, Ncube has also revealed that local umpire Gopolang Mekgwe left the country yesterday (Monday) for Belgium, where she will officiate at the Belgian International. Mekgwe is one of the three local umpires (alongside Emmanuel Kgaboetsile and Gagothata Modigela) who are highly regarded by Badminton World Federation (BWF). “She (Mekgwe) will be officiating at the Belgian International, it is one of the biggest tournament’s in Belgium and we are confident she will do us proud” continued the PRO.
“We also have Kgaboetsile, who will be soon leaving for the Youth Olympics in Argentina next month. He has been invited by the world governing body, BWF. He has officiated in the big events such as the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in Australia in April, and he has just had his contract extended three years by BWF, which simply demonstrates they trusted him. He has also inducted many local technical officials” he concluded.