Table tennis dangles P8,000 cash prize

On the table: P8,000 will be the first prize money at the regional tournament PIC: PHATSIMO KAPENG
On the table: P8,000 will be the first prize money at the regional tournament PIC: PHATSIMO KAPENG

The Botswana Table Tennis Association (BTTA) will for the first time in three years open doors to regional players for the Botswana Open scheduled for early December.

The tournament is the first international tournament to be played on home soil since the AUSC Region V Games in 2018 and carries P8,000 prize money, which is one of the highest in the region. The Botswana Open is, however, only open to players from southern Africa. Speaking to Mmegi Sport, BTTA communications officer, Arthur Kgaswe believes that the tournament will attract the region's top ping pong players as the 'enormous' prize money is being used as a catch to beef up the competition for the two-day tournament.

"There are always competitions like this open for players in the region, like the South African regional open. But if you look at those, you will find out that the prize is R400 but the players have to travel long distances to play for such a prize. For the Botswana Open, the prize money is worth the journey. So we hope that it will help bring some of the best players from outside, players from Zimbabwe, Angola and other countries in the region," Kgaswe said. The Botswana Open is to be held from December 11-13, 2021, at the BUAN Hall, Sebele. The gold medalist will pocket P8,000 while the second-placed player will walk away with P4,000 with the semi-finalists and quarterfinalists getting P2,000 and P1,000 respectively.

The BTTA will also have the juniors section, the Under-19 Cup. The winners in the juniors category will pocket P2,000 while the second-placed and semi-finalists get P1,000 and P500 for their sweat.

Meanwhile, the BTTA has appointed veteran player, Thobo Matlhatsi of BDF Table Tennis Club as the national team coach. He will work alongside Boykie Selerio in the new-look technical team setup that will guide a fresh looking team picked from the national team selection playoffs held recently. On form Bakang Maloka, Tshenolo Mooketsi, Tirelo Tshipinare and youngster Sean Dekop make up the men's team. The women's team is made up of Tshepiso Rebatenne, Constance Kuswani, Game Kebodiwang and Tshephang Kebodiwang.

Editor's Comment
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