The senior women’s national football team Coach Gaolethoo Nkutlwisang, who hails from the small village of Kareng in Ngamiland has shared with Times Sports her journey in the male dominated sport, and her achievement in taking the Mares for the first time to the quarter finals of the 2022 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations hosted by Morocco from last month.
The 42 -year old coach revealed that she started playing football at a young age, with the support of the men’s football players who helped realise her talent.
“Most of the time I was groomed by males to become a good football player because back then in Maun there were no women’s football teams,” she explained.
Nkutlwisang who enrolled for coaching courses in 2008 while also playing for Double Action believes that for one to be a great coach they have to learn from others also taking into consideration what they want to achieve. In her coaching career, she draws inspiration from Dutch football coach, Vera Pauw and the Brazilian women’s football coach, Pia Sundhage.
“I always make sure that I maintain high standards of professionalism so that by the time I retire I have something to be proud of,” she noted.
Nkutlwisang further said taking The Mares to the quarter finals of the 2022 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations has been one of her biggest achievements. The Mares through her efforts has since gained a lot of support locally.
In 2008 when she was still an assistant coach The Mares managed position 2 at the Zone 5 games that were held in South Africa, the team also took position 2 during the 2020 COSAFA Women’s Championship.
Meanwhile the Kareng native has lamented that some of the challenges they are faced with as women’s football is lack of funding. She also revealed that as National team coaches they are also regarded as volunteers, and get low remuneration.