Botswana Netball Association (BONA) is hard at work preparing for the mini-league commencing this Sunday in both the north and south zones. The league is expected to run for seven weeks until the 5th of March 2022.
Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC) has pumped P450 000 into BONA coffers to cover both the league and national team assignments.
BONA will use the mini league as a return to play strategy and to gauge their readiness to run activities using the new Covid-19 protocols.
In an interview with Voice Sport, BONA Spokesperson, Mokeresete Mokeresete said from the money they got from the commission, P250 000 will go towards the mini league while P200 000 will be used to prepare the ladies national team for the upcoming 2023 World Cup qualifiers.
“It is a kind of a relief fund to cater for return back to play that will include mini-league and preparations since we have been out of action for two years. We need to prepare for World Cup Qualifiers and COSANA competitions this year,” said Mokeresete.
Local netball teams last tasted action in 2018 during the last edition of My Spar My Botswana netball league which only lasted for six weeks.
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Since then, the association has failed to lure in sponsors to support the national league resulting in no action and below par performances at the national team level and a drop in World Netball rankings.
“For the mini-league, we don’t have any prize money. We will just assist each team with grants to the tune of P10 000 which will help them to prepare themselves and participate in the league,” explained Mokeresete.
With seven weeks of play, teams are going to be categorized by senior ladies section for players who are 21 years and above, under 20 girls section and men’s section.