Life on the salt pans

Portia Mlilo
EXCITED: Tshelametsi

*Tshelametsi talks about football in Sowa Town

He left his former employer Security Systems under a dark cloud, terminating his contract 18 months before time.

However, the newly appointed Sua Flamingoes Football Club Goalkeeper Coach, Kagiso Tshelametsi says he’s enjoying life in the soda ash city and can’t wait for the start of the 2020/21Premier League season.

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Tshelametsi signed a two year deal with league rookies who got automatic promotion after being declared Debswana North Division Champions.

“Tshela” as he’s affectionately known said after his abrupt departure from Systems he received a call from Sowa Flamingoes.

“I went for the interview and accepted their offer. They have an exciting project that I’m proud to be a part of. I like challenges and I’m glad we are starting this new chapter together. I can’t wait for the new season to start,” said Tshelametsi.

The excited 40-year-old former Zebras shot-stopper and now national team goalkeeper coach said when he quit his last employment he had no idea where he’d go next.

He said the atmosphere was no longer conducive for him to continue his role with the Alarm Boys.

“One of the technical team members felt the Head Coach Chico Nare was working too closely with me instead of him and this created tension between us. I could not freely execute my duties and the working environment was not healthy,” revealed Tshelametsi.

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The Mahalapye native, known for keeping a low profile has an impressive coaching record with junior national teams.

Before being appointed the senior national team goalkeeper coach, he turned up for the national U17 and U23.

He also had a stint at Mahalapye Hotspurs.

Since rocking up at Township Rollers training grounds in 1996 to try his luck and unseat club legend Lesego “Chokri” Moeng, he has never looked back.

Tshelametsi went on to have an incredible career with The Blues. His career was unfortunately cut short when he tore his knee ligaments in 2007 during a game between Notwane and Nico United.

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The first operation done locally was unsuccessful and he went back into theatre in South Africa, an operation that took five years to completely heal.

Tshela was nearly lost to football completely until former Botswana Football Association Technical Director Sonnyboy Sethibe invited him for a coaching course.

The football spark was reignited, and the lanky Tshela has been grooming young keepers for local clubs and country with the same dedication that saw him dethrone the legendary Moeng to become Rollers’ number one.

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