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Table tennis is going up » TheVoiceBW

Table tennis is going up » TheVoiceBW
Table tennis is going up » TheVoiceBW


Top table for table tennis as a sport promoted to BNSC Tier 1

As a reward for its impressive performance both on and off the table, table tennis has earned a place at the top of the Botswana sport.

Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC) has promoted the sports code to Tier 1, an upgrade that will see the Botswana Table Tennis Association (BTTA) receive improved funding.

The top category, which also includes athletics, cricket, football, tennis and volleyball, is reserved for National Sports Associations (NSA) that excel both in athletic performance and in the management of their affairs.

BNSC introduced this association categorization system in 2021, to ensure that funds are distributed based on where they are most earned, with high-performing associations receiving the largest share of the pie.

Starting at the lowest tier (level 4), table tennis's rise to the top has been rapid, partly due to the BTTA's repeated ability to attract sponsorship.

Phoenix Assurance, Stag International, Okavango Diamond Company, Turnstar Holdings, Botho University, Indian High Commission and First Capital Bank Botswana are some of the high-profile institutions that have supported the sport in recent years.

In addition to a national competition funded by Phoenix Assurance, BTTA regularly hosts open tournaments throughout the year, complete with decent prize money.

When it comes to ranking, other important factors taken into account are the sport's ability to create employment/income for players and also make an impact on the international stage.

BTTA has been able to achieve this through initiatives such as the Phoenix Assurance Life Changing Award, which raises P25,000 and goes to the best performing player at the Phoenix Grand Slam competition.

Kudzanani Motswagole, Chairman of the BTTA, expressed his delight at what he called a “milestone moment”, noting that it was the result of a lot of hard work.

“This is a great achievement for table tennis as it has demonstrated its ability to develop talent, achieve success on the continental and global stage, and manage its resources effectively to deliver results.”

The grateful president was quick to thank everyone who played a role in taking local table tennis to the next level.

“We are grateful to sponsors and partners who believed in us and contributed to this success. Their support has been instrumental in helping table tennis reach greater heights, and we look forward to continuing these fruitful collaborations. We must continue to lead by example and help drive the growth of the sport in Botswana,” Motswagole said, adding that maintaining Tier 1 status will require continued efforts and innovation.

Meanwhile, BTTA will host Commonwealth Youth Championships from July 8 to 14, followed by the Africa Youth Championships for U/15 and U/19 athletes from July 15 to 21 at the Botho University Multi-Purpose Hall.

Hosting such international performances is just one of the reasons why table tennis will now dine with Botswana's sport's elite.




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