‘Sup­port for youth tal­ent key to suc­cess’

Lesotho Times - - Sport - Mikia Kalati

A CALL has been made for Le­sotho’s sports as­so­ci­a­tions to in­vest more in youth de­vel­op­ment to en­sure bet­ter per­for­mances in con­ti­nen­tal tour­na­ments.

This was said by Le­sotho In­sti­tute of Sports As­so­ci­a­tions (LISA) pub­lic re­la­tions of­fi­cer Te­boho Pholo in an in­ter­view with the Le­sotho Times af­ter the coun­try won two gold medals at the Con­fed­er­a­tion of Schools Sports and As­so­ci­a­tions’ (COSSASA Ball Games) held in Botswana last week.

Le­sotho was rep­re­sented in the dis­ci­plines of soc­cer and net­ball with the un­der-13 and un­der-17 foot­ball teams go­ing all the way to con­quer com­pe­ti­tion that in­cluded Botswana, Zim­babwe, Namibia, Zam­bia and Swazi­land.

“I think our suc­cess at the con­ti­nen­tal stage and be­yond lies in school com­pe­ti­tions,” Pholo said.

“The youth stage is where you can find a lot of tal­ent. How­ever, it re­quires a lot of hard work to reach the full po­ten­tial.

“That’s why I think we can only do well in com­pe­ti­tions like the Olympic Games if we catch them young.”

He said sports as­so­ci­a­tions needed to pool re­sources and ideas to­gether to fos­ter grass­roots de­vel­op­ment.

“We all need to come to the party as sports as­so­ci­a­tions and sup­port each other, es­pe­cially at the de­vel­op­men­tal stages of our ath­letes,” said Pholo.

“Surely, there is some­thing we have not been do­ing right, hence our failures in ma­jor sport­ing events such as the re­cently-held Olympics.”

The LISA pub­li­cist said there was hope for Le­sotho go­ing for­ward, al­though there was an ur­gent need for the as­so­ci­a­tions so­ci­a­tions to map a way for­ward in light of Le­sotho’s ’s lack­lus­tre cam­paign dur­ing the 2016 Rio Game which did not elicit a sin­gle medal.

“There are a lot of pos­i­tives we can take from the Botswana games,ames, and it is even more grat­i­fy­ing that it was a com­pe­ti­tion for young play­ers,” said Pholo.

“So we need to find ways to solve our prob­lems as far as ou­rur poor show­ing at ma­jor sport­ing events is con­cerned.ncerned.

“We com­petedd against strong teams and still per­formed well with our two teams which proves there is po­ten­tialal in our coun­try.”

He added: “We e need to come up with a proper strat­egy to re­alise our goals. I think we should start at the pri­mary level and giveve the young­sters all the sup­port they hey need to ful­fil their dreams.

“I was happy to see our net­ball team com­pet­ing pet­ing bet­ter be­cause our un­der-20der-20 team did not per­form m very well in the re­cent re­gional com­pe­ti­tion thatat was also held in Botswanatswana a few weeks ago.” .”

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