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Cycling Shun World Champs

KABELO BORANABI
Mmetla Masire speaking at cycling AGM PIC MORERI SEJAKGOMO
After missing out on World Championships on numerous occasions, local cyclists will have to wait a little longer as the Botswana Cycling Association (BCA) confirmed that they will not send a team to the games in the near future.

Speaking at the association’s annual general meeting (AGM) held in Gaborone on Saturday, BCA president Mmetla Masire said their focus is on development, as they want to build a strong squad for future competitions.

“We will not send a team to the World Championships because we cannot afford it. We also feel it is not important at the moment. It is one thing to go out there to participate. You would go for a kilometre and then you would be out for a longer period. It (world champs) is not on our focus.

“We will focus on the continental competitions because we want to be competitive. We would then graduate to the next level as of now we would not be sending a team to world championships,” he said.

Masire also told the gathering that BCA has expressed interest to compete at the next year’s Commonwealth to be held in Australia, but they are awaiting approval from the Botswana National Olympic Committee (BNOC). “BNOC has not confirmed our request yet. But we remain optimistic that they would allow us to send at least two cyclists and officials to the games. There is a huge possibility but we will have to wait for their approval.”

He further said the association has been financially crippled hence for the first time they have failed to send the national team to the intercontinental

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championships in the past year. Masire also praised the local cyclists for joining overseas clubs but bemoaned the way the transfers are made, as the association at times is left in the dark.

“We are pleased that our cyclists are joining teams in other countries. But we are worried about how the deals are being done. We do not know if they are happy or not we are left in the dark, we do not know anything about their contracts.”

Masire confirmed the association has successfully held its national championships in the past year and urged the affiliates to lure more sponsors in to the sport. “Clubs should make sure that sponsors get value for their money. We need to please them as we are competing for sponsorships with other 30 or more sporting codes.

rt, BOKA spokesperson Sensei Isaiah Ramontshonyana said hosting UFAK championships gives them an opportunity to compete in all categories hence increasing chances of getting more medals. He said hosting gives them a chance to get funding from World Karate Federation (WKF) and UFAK to purchase equipments such as mats and scoreboards. 

Botswana Kofukan Federation president, Sensei Million Maswimbika retained his position as UFAK third vice president.

UFAK executive committee: Mesbahi Tahar Mohamed (president), Cherif Bechir   (first vice president), Gaye Souleymane (second vice president), Nasr Elsayed Sayed (fourth vice president), Emmanuel Wakam (secretary general)



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