Former Mares Head Coach Says Axing A Blessing    

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Just days after her sacking as Mares head coach, Mohambi Saulosi has said the move by Botswana Football Association (BFA) was a blessing as it has come as a relief on his side.

Saulosi was only two months into the job, having taken over from Gaolethoo Nkutlwisang who was demoted in September this year on claims that she was not qualified for the job. Saulosi has since been replaced by Basimanebotlhe Malete as Head Coach.

Saulosi told Times Sports that the decision by BFA to remove him from the post came as a relief because his appointment was surrounded with controversies and untrue stories. He believes the timing was wrong for him to have been part of the team.

“I feel the BFA was not prepared, ready and sure of what they were looking for when appointing me. I however commend them for having had the courage to make that decision after realising that they appointed me when they were not ready to acquire my services,” he said.

Saulosi said when the BFA called him for the post, he thought he was going to sign a contract but only for him to be told he is going to coach only until December this year. He stated that his deal with BFA to coach until December was never to be because of conflicts and conspiracy theories that surrounded his appointment.

“Given a chance to coach the team I was going to bring in fresh legs to close the gaps of players who are about to reach retirement, biologically females advance to retirement age early because of their biological make up, when they reach the ages of 30 they cannot perform some physical activities as effective as when they are younger,” he revealed the plans he had about the Mares.

Saulosi added that he was going to bring in young talented players to the team and also ask for the association to assist him with the resources for friendly matches. Part of his plans was also to offer players an effective training schedule to work on, work on their tactical ability and psychological wellbeing so that they can believe in themselves. Saulosi stated that most players in Botswana lack psychological wellbeing because the society was meant to believe they cannot achieve anything.

“I would have wanted to do a real transformation in the team, I wish my successor could do the same. I also wish the technical team good luck as they are going to be playing different games, I am still with them as I communicate with and encourage them,” he said.

For his part, local sports analyst Fabian Zulu is of the view that Saulosi could have been given some time to prove himself. “I believe that Saulosi could have been given time but the question remains whether he was active where he was and did he have enough information about The Mares,” he said.

That as it may, he also believes that the appointment of Basimanebotlhe Malete as the new Head Coach is a good decision because he has been in the system with the Mares for a long time and he has a good idea about the team and good understanding of its players. Zulu said the question that remains however is whether Malete has the required qualifications.

BFA announced that after a careful review of the recent performance of the Botswana Women’s Nation team, a decision was made to make changes in the Senior Women National technical team.

BFA has also appointed Odirile Matlhaku as Technical Advisor, Tapaphiwa Gaebolae and Jacqualine Gaobinelwe as Assistant Coaches.

“Botswana Football Association is fully focused on creating an enabling environment that would facilitate The Mares to quality for WAFCON 2024 which will be played in Morocco,” reads the media release. According to the press release, BFA believes that with the right leadership in place The Mares has everything that will be required for them to reach the WAFCON finals.

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