- The last league game was in 2018 under Mascom Wireless
- BVF needs at least P1.5m for the league and P500K for cup competitions
Volleyball players will have to wait yet longer before they may return to action, The Business Weekly Sports has established.
The government recently announced that all sporting codes affiliated to the Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC) may resume action after a long hiatus that was imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19. However, for volleyball players and enthusiasts, the announcement cannot be celebrated because there is still no one coming forward with sponsorship.
“We still do not have sponsors and our league cannot take place without sponsors,” said the president of Botswana Volleyball Federation (BVF), Daniel Molaodi in an interview. “We are looking for sponsors but it is difficult out there. We have shifted to lesser known entities because more established companies are not willing to come on board and are telling us about being committed elsewhere.”
But the major challenge in the new approach, Molaodi said, is how to convince the smaller entities to part with a minimum of P1.5 million that BVF requires for the league and P500 000 to run a tournament. “You can see what a task this must be for lesser known companies in these challenging times,” he noted.
The situation of BVF has actually been exacerbated by a reduced grant from BNSC, making prospects of self-sponsorship impractical. Molaodi said the federation will meet with clubs on the 24th of this month to chart a difficult course to return to the playing field in these lean times.
The BVF national league has not taken place for more than 30 months, the last league game having been played in the last quarter of 2018 under a Mascom Wireless sponsorship that was not renewed. BVF cup competitions are in the same situation of no one coming forward with sponsorship, JB Sports being the last entity to sponsor the tournaments.
NATIONAL TEAM ACTIVITIES
Molaodi said the absence of the league has affected the national team because it has been difficult for BVF to take part in regional and international competitions without it and sans sponsorships “The players are now rusty as they have been inactive for a longest time,” he said. “We have no idea of the response if we called them to a training camp in the future.”
BVF is nevertheless devising a plan to call national team players to a training camp to prepare for participation in upcoming tournaments, Molaodi disclosed. “If we call that camp, we are obviously going to go for regular national team players as we have not been able to identify any new ones due to the Covid-18 pandemic,” he said.