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Tebogo to get P10,000 for breaking 100m record

Record breakers: Matlhaku (left) and Tebogo set new 100m records PIC: BAA
Rising 17-year-old sprinter, Letsile Tebogo will receive P10,000 for breaking the men’s 100m record, but there will be no reward for his 26-year-old counterpart, Leungo Matlhaku.

Tebogo and Matlhaku, respectively broke the men and women’s 100m records during the Sport View Runners Club meet at the National Stadium on Saturday.

Tebogo’s new mark of 10.14 is also a regional record, which means he will pocket P10,000 cash for the feat. However, there is no reward for breaking the local record, which is why Matlhaku will not receive any cash from the Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC). The athletes’ incentive policy of 2012 states that only athletes who break regional and international records will get cash rewards.

For breaking a continental record, athletes stand to receive P20,000, while for Commonwealth Games, the reward is P30,000. For setting a new mark during the Olympic Games or World Championships, athletes pocket P100,000.

Acting BNSC chief executive officer, Tuelo Serufho said there were no incentives for breaking a national record, but said they are open to reviewing the policy. “We would want to look at it again to see if our position is still relevant. In doing so, we will look at what other countries are doing,” Serufho said.

“The young boy (Tebogo) will be rewarded as he broke a regional record. The complexity (with rewarding national record breakers), has been that there are so many sport codes and how do you reward some codes,” Serufho said. Tebogo of Lefika

Athletics Club left a new national 100m record after running a time of 10.14 secs, beating the mark set by Isaac Makwala of 10.20 secs in 2014. Matlhaku of Jwaneng Athletics Club ran the fastest time ever in the local women’s 100m after she shaved 15 secs off of Lydia Jele’s time 11.39 secs set in 2017, to cross the line in 11.24 secs.

Matlhaku and Tebogo were chosen as the best female and male athlete of the Sport View Runners Club meet, respectively. Botswana Athletics Association (BAA) vice president, Oabona Theetso said there was no cash reward from their end as well. However, he lauded the athletes for their performance considering the challenges due to the coronavirus (COVID-19). “The performance is promising, looking at the fact that running and competing has not been easy due to lockdowns, curfews and quarantines, but one looks back and says that the future looks bright,” Theetso said. He said while the Olympic Games qualifiers fall under the ambit of the BNSC, the BAA will continue with preparations, funds permitting. Four out of the five sportspersons who have booked their places at the Tokyo Olympic Games are from athletics. These are Nijel Amos, Christine Botlogetswe, Amantle Montsho and Galefele Moroko. They are joined by Keamogetse Kenosi, a female boxer.


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