Lack of school sports cost us- Gaobinelwe

Botswana Under-17 (in blue) against Burundi. PIC MORERI SEJAKGOMO
Botswana Under-17 (in blue) against Burundi. PIC MORERI SEJAKGOMO

The Botswana Under-17 girls national team head coach, Jacqueline Gaobinelwe, has blamed the lack of school sports and development in the country for the poor showing in the World Cup qualifiers.

The team bowed out after suffering a 6-1 aggregate annihilation at the hands of Burundi. The team lost the first leg by four goals to one before suffering a 2-0 defeat at home in the second leg this past Friday. Gaobinelwe said lack of school sports and sports development hinder progression of sports in the country more especially for the young ones, which is where Under-17 and Under-20 are sourced. “We usually pick the Under-17 team from schools, like the team that I have today, most of them were waiting for results. So, without school sports, this has a negative impact. It affected the way we play,” Gaobinelwe said.

She added that the school sports also help the national team as young players can garner experience by being selected to play in international competitions such as the Confederation of Southern African School Sports Association (COSASSA). “The BFA has regional leagues of which I probably would say they are not giving that much of training that we need to prepare a player to be good for an international competition,” she said. Pointing out yet another downfall that cost the junior Mares to go to the next round of qualifiers was how they were snubbed of any international friendly game before kick starting the qualifications. “I wish maybe we could have gotten an international game. Yes, we had friendly games, but they were against local teams. Maybe if we could have gotten a game more like this as a friendly before we played the tournament, probably we could have done even much better because they would have had a feel of international game,” she said. She further stated that her charges let her down on how they failed to capitalise on the home and away chance as both fixtures were played in Botswana.

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