The men’s softball team is targeting a top six finish ahead of the World Championships to be held in Prague, Czech Republic from June 13-23.
Monitor Sport, the team’s assistant coach Tony Moyo said after an impressive showing at the 2017 championships where they finished eighth, they aim higher for this year’ series.
“We finished in the top eight in the last championships, but looking at how we have been planning, our target is position six or better. It is always good to play against worthy champions. The tradition of Botswana softball is that we have the best pitchers in the world. If you have the best pitchers nothing should worry you when we get to the games,” he said.
However, he said the squad has been in camp for just a week but the players’ fitness levels do not worry him.
“We just got on camp this week and the training sessions we had were quite convincing. Our season has been long but the players have been very active. If you look at the players in the squad they are from teams that have been active in the league. We have been doing a lot of physical conditioning, but we worked more on the technical and mental aspects of the game.”
The technical team has assembled a 17-men squad and will enter the competition as the second ranked team is Africa. Moyo said the pressure would come as motivation to his
“It is never easy to pick up a team especially when you conduct trials but they give you a chance to see players who can thrive under pressure. During the trials players worry about their performance so much and that can put a player under pressure so I believe we have picked up the best team. There will always be pressure, there other teams also have the pressure from because they know what we are capable of and sometimes in softball game it could take one inning or one error to determine the game,” he said.
The team is in Group A that features world’s top ranked side New Zealand, third placed Japan, Argentina, Czech Republic, Mexico, Philippines and Cuba. They will begin their campaign against Argentina on June 14.
The Traveling Squad:
Pitchers: Gideon Puakaa (Carats), Pamidzani Mazulugwa (Panthers), Kunyalala Samuel (Police IX), Romeo Tshelametse (Rail Giants), Kagiso Mogale (BDF IX)
Catchers: Thabiso Radithobane (Wells International), Unaswi Gudu (BDF IX), Morulaganyi Moalosi (Carats)
Infield: Moses Kgosimore, Kefilwe Kenosi (both Police IX), Ofentse Ketshogile (Wells International), Tiro Mazulugwa (Panthers), Jurry Manaka (BDF IX), Brian Dekoker (Gatalamotho)
Outfield: Eric Simwanza, Thabo Dhlodhlo (both Wells International), Tshepho Ditiro (Comets)
Head Coach: Pako Maforaga
Assistant Coaches: James Moremedi, Tony Moyo
Team Scorer: Tsholofelo Moitlhobogi
Team Manager: Puso Kgosietsile
Head of Delegation: Kelebogile Seitei