The Shakawe Stream Football tournament that will be hosted in the Okavango region for the very first time with an aim to unearth raw talent and expose the players to professional football.
The tournament, for both males and females of age ranging between18-25 will be held from July 2nd-3rd for women’s football and then from 9th -10th for the men’s football while the semis and finals shall be held between the 16th -18th of the same month.
The tournament will feature 16 teams which comprising of 7 women’s clubs and 9 men’s clubs. The women’s teams include, Mohembo United, The Lion FC, Ndundu Young Fighters, Okavango FC, Blue Waters FC, Samochima United and The Lords Soccer Club while the men’s teams comprises of PDF Soccer Club, Gold Star FC, Mohembo United, Ndundu Young Fighters, Blue Waters FC, Samochima United, The Lords FC, Okavango FC and The Lions FC. The teams are from Shakawe and the surrounding settlements.
Winners of the tournament from both genders will walk away with P5000 each, a trophy and gold medals while the other 14 teams will only get medals.
The Patron of the tournament, former BFA CEO, Ookeditse Malesu told Times Sport that the tournament will be played yearly with an anticipated annual budget of more than P300 000 for a three-year period. Through his sport brand company, OLA74, Malesu revealed that they have invested more than P300 000 to the initiative as a startup capital to support the teams with kits, balls, trophy and price money for winners of the tournament.
He has since urged the participating teams to utilise this initiative to demonstrate steady progress up the ladder of local and international football. He hinted that there are many scouting agencies from Gaborone, South Africa and India among others who are willing to observe the tournament.
Malesu said his dream is to see more local players from the Shakawe Stream Football tournament play outside the country something which he believes is possible with finance and good sports management.
Malesu acknowledged that distance might be a challenge for Shakawe, but he highlighted that the raw talent found in the region can help the national team. To stress this, he highlighted that recently a team from the Shakawe stream, Mohembo United got a silver medal from the just ended Nhabe Promotional play-offs that were held in Maun.
The new tournament is said to have attracted many investors and partners who are willing to be part of it, this include local companies comprising of Hydro Borehole Drilling Botswana, MMR Mining & Treatment, Platinum Hotels, YEBO Magazine, Botswana Telecommunication (BTC) and Air Botswana.
For his part the Shakawe Stream Football Tournament Coordinator, Themba Senyemba assured that the teams are ready for the tournament also expressing optimism that it will contribute massively to the development of the sport in their region.