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Bowls president bows out after decade in charge

CALISTUS KOLANTSHO
Last roll: Robert has stepped down as bowling president
Botswana Bowling Association (BBA) president, Kitso Robert is stepping down after leading the association for more than a decade.

His vice president, John Gaborutwe has taken over the reigns and would be expected to reinvigorate the sport.

Robert said bowling has been part of his life for the past 12 years and it was now time for a new leader to take over.

“There has been a lot of achievement during my tenure. We had a national team that was self-sponsored to qualify at the World Championships. We also sponsored ourselves to play at the World Championships in 2012. We have won countless medals at the African States Tournaments over the years,” he said.

Robert said bowls has always been considered a sport for non-citizens, but that mindset has shifted over the years. Incoming president, Gaborutwe said as a minority sport, it was his responsibility to mobilise and make bowling take its rightful place in the game. He said development and training of officials was key. “We have informed the Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC) about our intention of establishing bowling clubs in Serowe and Maun. The commission is backing the idea and they have requested us to state the number of greens we want, the size of land needed and the type of facilities we need,” Gaborutwe said. He said bowls has always been known

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as a sport for the elderly, but internationally, world champions are young people. He said the plan is to push for the involvement of young people locally.

“We want to introduce a programme of using school halls because we do not have enough facilities around the country. That would be an opportunity to generate interest from students,” he said. Two executive committee positions, competition secretary and executive secretary would be contested for. Marea Modutlwa faces current executive secretary, George Ngata Kieni.

Ookeditse Lekang would battle it out against Remmy Kebapetse for the position of competition secretary.

Director of bowls, Gasegarona Pabalelo and treasurer, Mervyn Mitchell’s position will only be contested for next year.

Meanwhile, Gaborone Bowling Club will host the annual Rose Bowl-Mixed Fours tournament over the weekend. The tournament is sponsored by Letshego Botswana.

Five clubs Gaborone, Jwaneng, Phikwe, Orapa and Francistown will battle for honours.

Francistown are the defending champions and when they won the tournament, the club was represented by Des Desai (skip), Baven Balendra, Shenilla Mahomed and George Naik.

The second position was claimed by Orapa, which had Mmoloki Ookeditse (skip), Kefilwe Moleleki, Judith Baleseng and Sidwell Gaborone. Jwaneng scooped third position after fielding Regent Reid (skip), Ofentse Dikupe, Juliet Mokoko and Mpopi Pelemo.



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