The Botswana Olympics Boxing Team got a massive boost from Zambia in their quest to fully readies for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics following the resumption of sports activities in the country a fortnight ago. The Zambian Olympics boxing team arrived in Gaborone last week Friday for 2 weeks long intensive training ahead of the highly anticipated global games slated for next month.
This comes after the two neighbouring countries failed to secure adequate international training camps in Europe due to Covid-19 setbacks. The Zambian delegation is made up of 3 boxers Patrick Chinyemba (52kg), Everisto Mulenga (57kg) and Stephen Zimba (69kg) accompanied by head coach Wisdom Mudenda and team manager Captain Nalumango.
The teams have started their intensive training over the weekend, and they are training at Botswana Boxing Association (BOBA) hall at the national stadium. BOBA mouthpiece Taolo Tlouetsile told the Gazette Sport that they believe that Zambia will give the local boxers much needed training especially with the quality of boxers they have at their disposal.
“Zambia is amongst the top ranked countries in the region in Boxing, the have quality boxers who have international competition background such as World championships, Olympics and African championships just like us. We confidently believe that the training is essential especially during this tough time of covid 19 pandemic. This will be a curtain raiser for other international and final preparatory camps that the team will embark on before the Olympics”, said Tlouetsile.
Meanwhile the National Team Coach and olympiad Lechedzani Master Luza said the preparations are going well even though it has not been easy to train well under the covid-19 restrictions and protocols which sometimes slow their progress.
“We have been doing well in training, but we sometimes encounter challenges that has to do with Covid 19 pandemic, where we sometimes have to miss training in order to do frequent tests because of contact tracings and other complications. We have Zambia here with us and both teams are doing well. We are planning on leaving for Russia on the first week of July before we heard to Tokyo,” Said Luza.
He further stated that there is need for the international camps for boxers to settle and fit well at the world stage.
“it is good to give athletes a platform which can help them familiarize themselves with the international competition set up before the actual tournaments. Keamogetse Kenosi and Mohammed Otukile have been at the world competitions couple of times, and I believe they won’t struggle that much despite Covid-19.” added Luza.
Meanwhile Botswana has three boxers in camp being, Otukile who qualified through continental rankings after he was ranked 3rd in Africa and Kenosi who qualified at the Africa Senior Championships in 2020 after winning silver and lastly George Molwantwa who is just a sparring partner to the qualified boxers.