Gaborone adventure ends in disappointment

Gaborone adventure ends in disappointment

GABORONE, Botswana – The Botswana adventure is over for two Lesotho Women’s Super League sides that competed at the Inter-Festive Women Football Tournament last weekend.
The two teams were Kick4Life and Basetsana and, although they failed to advance from their respective groups, both coaches – Puseletso Mokhosi and Monaheng Montšo – are buzzing from the experience and journey they took to Botswana to participate in the Inter-Festive Women Football Tournament.
The competition is held annually with teams from Namibia, Swaziland, South Africa, Lesotho and Botswana competing for glory. It is hosted annually by different clubs and last year was hosted in Lesotho by Kick4Life.

The mission of the tournament is to break the barriers to professionalism for women in sports.
The nine teams that contested this year’s event were the hosts Prisons Ladies, Mexican Girls, University of Botswana, Msasa Football Club, Young Buffaloes, V-Power Angels, Double Action and two Lesotho teams – Kick4Life and Basetsana.

The teams were divided into three groups of three teams and Kick4Life bowed out of their pool without winning a game.
In their first game Kick4Life played the hosts Prisons Ladies and it was a tough outing as they lost 6-0. Their second match was a goalless draw with V-Power Angels of Namibia.
Mokhosi say the harsh 6-0 score against Prisons Ladies does not reflect the performance on the field for her charges.
“When I was preparing to go to Botswana it was about results and to study other teams from other countries on how they are growing football in their teams. In terms of results we didn’t get what we wanted because we failed to proceed to the next round after group stages, but in terms of the learning we learnt a lot. You can see how women’s football is growing and as a person and the team you are leading you have to do what you have to do to go forward,” Mokhosi said.

“The score doesn’t reflect the performance on the field because the team we were playing against knew how to do their job in the first ten minutes and after that they settled. We had to chase them and it was not easy but I can say that’s where we realised our weaknesses that when we have a situation like that we failed to come back into the game. We are working with players who are still young so mentally they couldn’t focus after those goals that came in succession after 20 minutes,” she said.
However, despite the results, Mokhosi said she is happy and labelled the trip a success. She said Kick4Life have taken a breather they needed and that she expects a big performance when the Women’s Super League season resumes next year.

“The second game helped me a lot because we watched the team we were going to play against, we saw where they were strong and where they were weak. The purpose was to attack and get the goals fast but we couldn’t because the game finished 0-0,” Mokhosi said.

“This tournament is not meant for competition it is social interaction, it’s where players from Lesotho get to learn about others from different countries, and how they live. I can say it was a very successful trip for us because even along the way we didn’t have any problems.”#

Mokhosi continued: “The players took a breather now from the league and focused on something else, they will come back eager to get back (on the field), they went to Botswana, saw interesting things. I believe when the season returns they will be open to new things and I am expecting a high performance in the second.”

On the other hand, Montšo said Basetsana were undone by their inability to convert the chances they created in both games they lost but insisted they got the international experience they needed.
“I am very happy because we wanted to see the new players, we saw them and some have wanted to play for a long time and we couldn’t get them in,” Montšo said.
“I think they played really well they got international exposure, some of them hadn’t played at all and they were a bit scared before the games but if we can continue to have games like these they will grow,” he added.

“Our problem is our strikers, our finishing isn’t really great at all, just like you saw, we had a lot of chances but we failed to convert. The teams that beat us they won because they took their chances not because of performances.”
Montšo said Basetsana’s goalscoring problems go all the way to the league games and it is something they are going to keep working on.

Luciah Phahla

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