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Accident Shatters Bolelang's Coaching Dream

CHAKALISA DUBE
Malepa Bolelang with his daughter PIC: KEOAGILE BONANG
FRANCISTOWN: Former ECCO City Greens and Zebras forward, Malepa Bolelang declared he has given up all hope on his coaching dream, but insisted that he will not be totally lost to the beautiful game.

Bolelang had his right leg amputated in February 2018 following a horrific freak car accident. On the day, the former Premier League top goal scorer was celebrating his birthday at a popular drinking spot at Somerset West location. A car ploughed into him, leading to the amputation.

Chippa was by then part of the coaching set up at Francistown City Greens (formerly ECCO) and he openly showed the desire to pursue coaching. The former Premier League top marksman has since fully recovered following the amputation and walks with the aid of an artificial leg.

“ I initially wanted to be a coach, but because of the injury I do not think that is now feasible. I however still want to be part of the game. If I come back I want to be involved on the administrative side. I believe that my playing experience can help me effectively apply myself on the administrative part of the game should I find a suitable opportunity,” he said. Bolelang was speaking in an interview with The Monitor Sport moments after he was visited by a delegation from the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Development as well as Botswana Football Association (BFA) and Football Union of Botswana (FUB) officials.

The entourage was led by Minister Tumiso Rakgare with the BFA president, Mclean Letshwiti in attendance.

Bolelang added, “At the moment I am still busy with a few things. Once I am done I will start pursuing administrative opportunities in the

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game. Football has been very much a part of my life and has rewarded me so handsomely, so it will not be easy for me to totally stay away from the game. Being involved will be one way of giving back to the supporters and various stakeholders who supported me during the good and bad times.” 

Bolelang also commented about the relegation of Francistown City Greens to division one.

“I am deeply hurt but the relegation of the club was inevitable. The club has been struggling since losing its sponsorship from Botswana Meat Commission. I just wish that the club would be able to navigate past its current challenges and return to glory days. It is really sad to see the club going through a very difficult time because it forms an important part of the city’s football history.”

Bolelang played a leading role when he led ECCO (before the club was renamed to Francistown City Greens) to their first league title in the 2006-2007 season.

That was the first time in history that a side north of Dibete won the elite league. He was also voted the premier league Player of the Season. He also clinched the 2005-2006 top goal scorer award still playing for ECCO.

Bolelang maintained that he has been doing well in life since the amputation because he quickly accepted what had happened to him. He also said that his family and partner have helped cope with the tragedy that befell him.



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