Towering Chaba’s dramatic rise

Off the field: Chaba relaxes away from stinging spikes: KAGISO ONKATSWITSE
Off the field: Chaba relaxes away from stinging spikes: KAGISO ONKATSWITSE

She towers above the rest and packs a blistering serve. This is Tracy Chaba, the volleyball starlet who has transformed herself into the game’s new pin-up girl.

She has seen all in her blossoming career and has had the privilege to test her skills against the highly rated Algerians on their own turf.

Only last week, volleyball fans watched as her stock soared during the Zone Six All Africa Games qualifiers.  She was adjudged the best setter and attacker, which ultimately landed her the Most Valuable Player award.

Growing up in Nshakashokwe in the North East District, volleyball was the last thing on her mind. She tells Mmegi Sport her interest was in netball and athletics.

A certain teacher introduced her to volleyball in 2005 largely due to her height while still at primary school.

While Chaba was a student at Montsamaisa Junior Secondary School, a volleyball coach at Setlalekgosi JSS in Francistown recognised her talent and snatched her.  In 2006, Chaba was selected to be part of the national Under-17 squad and in the same year she was picked for the Under-19 squad.

She says she was the youngest member of the squad at 14years.

Chaba came to Gaborone in 2008 for her upper secondary school studies at Oriel International School, the same year that she joined Kutlwano Volleyball Club.

“In 2008, I was invited by Botswana Volleyball Federation (BVF) for training with the national team as part of development.

“I was selected to be part of the national team that played in Algeria and I was in the starting six in 2009. I have been part of the national team since then,” she says. Chaba went back to Algeria in 2013 after Kutlwano qualified for the Africa clubs championships. It was during the championships that her talent was recognised by Algeria based club, MBB.

She explains that she assisted the club finish the league in position two and also to qualify for the Algerian cup finals.

She explains she returned home after the Algeria Volleyball Federation decided that they no longer needed foreigners in the league. “I am still interested in playing volleyball outside the country, but unfortunately I have not found a club yet,” remarks Chaba.

Chaba observes that Botswana has all the ingredients to become an African volleyball powerhouse.

She feels the main challenge is lack of good preparations ahead of international tournaments.  She says other countries play friendly matches as part of preparations.

She argues it is important for the national team to prepare in advance to enable them to identify their weaknesses.

She says it is unfortunate volleyball is not receiving good financial backing despite evident growth and success over the years.

Editor's Comment
What about employees in private sector?

How can this be achieved when there already is little care about the working conditions of those within the private sector employ?For a long time, private sector employees have been neglected by their employers, not because they cannot do better to care for them, but because they take advantage of government's laxity when it comes to protecting and advocating for public sector employees, giving the cue to employers within the private sector...

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