Maun Karateka Reaches Region 5 Championships Semis

Date:

  • She lost to a South African at the semi finals of the competition

Delta Karate Academy Kumite gold medallist, Blessing Moipudi who participated at the just ended African Region 5 championships in South Africa after getting a last minute sponsorship from Selby Uniform Shop managed to reach the semi-finals of the competition where she unfortunately lost to her South African opponent.

Despite the challenges she faced before finally travelling to Durban for the competitions that ran from May 27 to 29, the Maun lad put up a gallant fight under the 54kg Kumite category to reach the semi-final and the necessary exposure to international competitions.

Following her appeal for sponsorship, Selby’s Uniform Shop came to the rescue and donated the needed P7500 to the the 16-year-old to cover for her travel expenses, accommodation, meals and competition fees.

Her Coach Calvin Thuthuka has however blamed the loss on the duress brought about by lack of funds and sponsorship as they spent more time sourcing sponsorship instead of focussing of preparations for the competitions.

“Selby’s uniform shop came to the rescue just a day before closing date for registration and Moipudi had already lost hope and doubting her trip and frustrated by the sponsorship issue hence her training was negatively affected by this,” Thuthuka noted.

He noted that though Moipudi got her sponsorship a week before commencement of the championships, she tried her best to utilise the few days training without any disturbance. The coach has since called on various organisations to join hands and support various sporting codes where there is need.

Meanwhile Botswana Karate Association (BOKA) Sports Development Officer China Metswi has said that despite the sponsorship issues, the Botswana Karate national team managed to win 46 medals at the championships. He indicated that the team managed to bring home 12 Gold medals,18 Silver medals and 16 Bronze medals. The team scooped an overall second position after South Africa.

“The region 5 championships were attended by countries among them Angola, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Mozambique and the host South Africa,” Metswi revealed.

Metswi reiterated that the Karate National Team athletes that represented the country at the championships each contributed an amount of P7500 as the association did not have enough money to cover the expenses.

He previously explained that Botswana National Sports Council which has been sponsoring the competition for the past 30 years had indicated that it is awaiting the 2022-2023 financial year government subventions from the Ministry of Youth Empowerment Sports and Culture Development (MYSC).

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