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BTTA targets regional medal.

Botswana Table Tennis Association president Karabo Selema says the association is targeting a podium finish from the Africa Union Sports Commission (AUSC) Region 5 Table Tennis Tournament.

The competition dubbed 'Magheba 2018' and featuring Angola, Malawi, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe and hosts Botswana will be held at Botho University in Gaborone.

It will commence with an official opening ceremony tomorrow and run until Sunday.

Briefing the media about the tournament at Oasis Motel on Monday, Selema said Botswana was excited to be hosting the competition because it is a rare opportunity.

'We are hopeful that our players will do their best and do their country proud. We want to compete well and at the worst win a bronze medal,' said the BTTA president.

He explained that the tournament will carry International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) ranking points and serve as qualifier for the Africa Senior Top 16 Cup.

In an interview last week BTTA public relations officer Zacharia Seabo said Botswana as hosts will be given the privilege of fielding two teams while other countries will field one team each.

Seabo said one team will comprise of senior players while the other one will be a developmental side. He said the decision to field a developmental side was taken in order to prepare the youngsters for future international competitions.

'This year alone, the ITTF (International Table Tennis Federation) calendar has the Africa Youth Games, Commonwealth Games, Africa Games just to mention but a few, with more coming in 2020 and beyond,' explained Seabo.

Furthermore, he said the tournament will feature a Para Table Tennis segment pitting together Botswana, South Africa and Zambia.

Local Organizing Committee chairperson Professor Edwin Matlotse said preparations were complete for the competition to commence.

He said they had secured sponsorships from various entities including subsidized lodging from Oasis Motel worth P87 000, balls, tracksuits and t-shirts worth P50 000 from Double

Happiness, subsidized venue from Botho University and P10 000 from Impression House. He further said Yarona FM was their media partner while Turn Star Holding has provided them with free advertising space.

The Botswana Senior Team comprises of Oratile Kedisaletse, Boitshwarelo Butale, Tshepiso Rebatenne, Namibo Mbulawa and Game Kebodiwang (ladies), Bakang Malokaka, Boago Malobela, Tirelo Tshipinare, Tshenolo Mooketsi and Masa Lesole (men).

The youth team in made up of Olerato Ramagapu, Tshephang Kebodiwang, Tshephang Motlhamme, Shatinah Shapi and Tefo Kehitile (ladies), Kola Modisathebe, Phetso Jack, Thapelo Molefi, Gofamodimo Matlale and Katlo Pelontwa (men).

The Para team has Lameck Tsimane (male) and Onneetse Isaiah (lady), while the coaches are Welcome Tema, Bonolo Mabote and Godiraone Bagwasi. Shadrack Matshidiso is the team manager.

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Publication:Botswana Daily News (Gaborone, Botswana)
Geographic Code:6BOTS
Date:Jan 23, 2018
Words:499
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