Fencing activities far in between

26th September 2017
PROBLEMS: No activity and commitment Source:The Midweek Sun

The growth of fencing in Botswana continues to be stifled by lack of activity and commitment from affiliates. This past weekend Botswana Amateur Fencing Association (BAFS) affiliates failed to show up for a tournament held in Gaborone. Nevertheless, the tournament went on with a hand full of athletes at the Botswana Karate Association (BOKA) dojo. In an interview this week, tournament organiser Thato Mpolokang said the categories included cadets and seniors athletes both male and female. “Ages ranged from nine years to 40 years.

There was also a male veteran who was competing against senior man. Some clubs did not attend but the number of athletes competing was not bad either in all categories including epee and sabre,” Mpolokang said. Nevertheless, fencing master Mpolokang who financed the tournament from her own pocket said she was satisfied with the athletes who turned up for the event. “Some parents came out to support their kids for the first time in large numbers. This shows great interest towards this sport.” Mpolokang said it was a crying shame that the local fencing association has not hosted any games since earlier in July this year. “That was when we had our 1st tournament which made me think really hard about this.

I wanted to add more games to the calendar.” I started planning to host this tournament in July through my own company “Cake meets Art” which was the sole sponsor. “It was not as easy as I thought but I managed to pay for everything including the venue, medals and trophies and logistics” “Our committee BAFS had nothing to do with the 1st annual T.X. fencing competion they just borrowed me fencing equipment. All the financial burden was carried by myself. Nevertheless, I had some help from Master Karabo Thobega who is also a fencing coach.

He assisted in terms of looking for things for the event he was my right hand man.Mpolokang (24) started fencing in 2015 where she secured silver against South Africa. That was when my love for the sport developed. I have since competed both local and out side the country.” I also hold level 2 diplomas in sabre fencing from a training academy in Budapest, Hungary last year 2016. This made me the 1st female Master in Botswana.Mpolokang will next compete at the Gaborone Open scheduled for October.

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