- Six companies contributed to the sponsorship
- Phoenix Assurance has extended extensive personal accident insurance cover to players
Botswana Table Tennis Association (BTTA) has announced a sponsorship of P100 000 that they sourced from different companies for their highly-anticipated Botswana International Open Championships due in Jwaneng on 10 December.
The tournament will involve players from across Africa in men and women’s singles, doubles and mixed doubles categories as well as junior categories (boys and girls).
The sponsorship is an improvement on the 2021 edition’s P65000 for the Gaborone tournament, courtesy of Phoenix Assurance Botswana.
This year’s tournament is sponsored by six companies led by Phoenix Assurance (P35 000), Blue Horizon Resources (P20 000), Cowburn & Associates (P20 000), Rosedale Holdings (P10 000), Aqualogic (P10 000) and Wepex Geotechnical (P5 000).
This year’s championships also come with improved offers and opportunities for local players because BTTA is eager to have an impact on the welfare of players on and off the playing field. In addition to leading the pack in its quotient of the sponsorship, Phoenix Assurance has also offered personal accident insurance cover for players as follows: P100 000 for permanent disability, P100 000 for loss of both eyes, up to P75 000 for death and P10 000 for medical expenses.
BTTA’s technical sponsor, Stag International, has also offered world-class equipment for use in the tournament. The equipment includes nets, umpires’ tables, training and competition balls, sorrounds, national team hospitality kit (naga, tracksuits, socks and towels) and competition kits for both men and women’s teams.
In an interview with Gazette Sports, BTTA president Kudzanani Motswagole said they are happy with the association’s progress in their quest to professionalise table tennis in the country.
“This is a true reflection of progress achieved through hard work and determination because we were voted into office to bring results and must fulfil the mandate,” he stated.
First time in history
“This is the first time in the history of table tennis to have a tournament sponsored with such a huge amount of money. BTTA currently hosts monthly tournaments with attractive prize money for the winners, thus making an economically meaningful contribution to players’ lives.
“All participants are now insured with a personal accident cover that includes permanent disability, injury and death by Phoenix Assurance Botswana. The association has been identified as one of the codes that have proven to account for public funds.
“The Phoenix grant and other contributions for which we are immensely grateful are credited to players’ accounts in an effort to make national sports associations professional. We are happy with this progress.”
Meanwhile, BTTA has also been applauded by the vice chairperson Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC), Tebogo Lebotse-Sebego, for their efforts in developing table tennis at the grassroots level in remote areas.
“This year BNSC enrolled BTTA in Re Ba Bona Ha project which was launched in Mabeleapudi to fast track the efforts of grassroots development,” she said.
“The remote areas programme covered donations of table tennis tables and equipment to Xanagas, New Xade, Dekar, Kareng, Maposa and Kuke primary schools.
“I urge other national sports associations to benchmark on BTTA and be inspired by the hardwork which brings such results in sports.”
Jobs and Indian scholarships
BTTA has also established a long-term partnership with the India High Commission to Botswana. The most tangible and valuable mark of this partnership is in the form of offered BTTA athletes long term scholarships for courses of choice and playing table tennis at top clubs in India.
The India High Commission has also facilitated conclusion of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between KGK Diamonds Botswana and BTTA through which 35 table tennis players are employed by the company.