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CAF ties force Galaxy, Orapa early return

KABELO BORANABI
Undecided: Orapa United have not made up their mind on playing Confederation Cup PIC: KENNEDY RAMOKONE
Jwaneng Galaxy and Orapa United are eyeing an early return to the field as they prepare for upcoming club continental competitions.

Galaxy and United will represent the country in the CAF Champions League and CAF Confederations Cup respectively.

Both sides have regrouped with the preliminary round games of the competitions scheduled for mid-November. The pair’s staff is undergoing medical tests as they wait on a decision to return to training.

“We have recalled our team as of now they are doing medicals including [the coronavirus] COVID-19 tests. As for training, we will wait for FA (Botswana Football Association) to give us the go ahead. For the COVID-19 tests, we are taking advantage of Debswana services so there is no cost for now. All players are here, we have not released any,” Orapa United’s communications manager, Kabo William said this week.

He, however, said the club has not yet decided on the participation on the continent’s second tier club competition. William anticipates the cost of the playing in the competition will be higher than the previous campaigns.

“We have not yet decided on the matter we have engaged our superiors to get guidance. It will be expensive looking at the difficulty of getting logistics in order. That will mean host team will have to test all involved during match day, to have a team in good shape and to compete in November you have to have a robust training plan as it is now to travel across boarder is a challenge and it will not come cheap,” William said. Galaxy’s public relations officer, Tankiso Morake said the club is awaiting a directive from the BFA to start training but confirmed the squad is undergoing medical tests.

“We stated that details of all preparations would be done after we get update from BFA. As previously stated in the media release

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the players will do medicals as well as the coronavirus (COVID-19) tests. These COVID-19 tests have got nothing to do with BFA. It is an initiative by the leadership to control the cases here in Jwaneng. The Jwaneng mine sponsors these tests in Jwaneng. We have written to the BFA. Until we get their response we will outline how we will go round preparing the players for the games,” Morake said.

BFA public relations officer, Tumo Mpatane said the two teams have not yet been given the green light to resume training, but said the association will be ready to assist the clubs prepare for the games.

“We have written to the BNSC (Botswana National Sport Commission) alerting them of the CAF club competitions calendar. We have also communicated with the club alerting them of their privileges on the competition. At the moment, we are awaiting a response from the BNSC to clear the clubs to train,” he said.

“We have a BFA medical committee and they direct us on the COVID-19. The two clubs are not training yet; they have not been directed to do so. What I understand is that they have regrouped their staff as initial preparations for training.”

Mmegi Sport has meanwhile been informed that the former league champions, Township Rollers have been put on red alert as United drag to confirm their participation in the CAF Confederation Cup.

Popa will gain the rights to play in the competition by virtue of finishing as runners up in the Mascom Top 8.

The Blues are said to be keen to seize the opportunity as they failed to secure a berth in the African club competitions for the first time in four years.



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