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Reserve athletes to rescue Botswana relay team

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BOINEELO RANKWAILA

The Botswana men’s 4x400m team at the ongoing Rio Olympic games seems not to be in good shape. Their relay race  is scheduled to be held this coming Saturday at 0210 Central African Time (CAT). The relay team comprises of Nijel Amos, Isaac Makwala , Onkabetse Nkobolo, Baboloki Thebe, Karabo Sibanda. Leaname Maotoanong has been hit by several injuries. Information reaching this publication indicates that only Sibanda and two reserves, Nkobolo and Maotoanong are fit to compete.
Amos  has been battling out throughout the season with hamstring injury. A source close to the athlete revealed that Amos arrived in Rio and did not train with others while nursing his injury. “Amos is a good hearted athlete who was brave enough to participate in such a huge arena despite being injured. Since his arrival in Rio he has not  trained enough,” the source stated.
Baboloki Thebe surprised the nation on Saturday when he was forced to pull out from the 400m semi-finals at the eleventh hour after picking up an injury.
Information reaching this publication indicates that Makwala  took part in the semi-finals where he finished 8’th with a swollen thigh.  With that said the injuries will force Maotoanong and Nkobolo to step in. The duo were part of the relay team that took gold at the African Senior Championships held in Durban and will be able replacements.
From the look of things it looks like the relay team will be made up of Sibanda-Nkobolo-Maotoanong the last candidate will be determined by the speedy recovery of the injured athletes, if not 800m athlete Boitumelo Masilo could jump in to save the sinking ship.
When reached for comment, one of technical staff who went to Rio games and requested anonymity said, “things look uncertain now but one thing for sure is that the physios and psychologist who are with us this side are working around the clock to aid our athletes.”

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