Plans to kick-off Botswana league placed on hold

Plans to kick off Botswana’s league, after a hiatus of almost one year have been put on hold after the country’s government imposed tighter COVID-19 restrictions.

Youth Empowerment, Sports and Culture Development minister Tumiso Rakgare suspended all contact sport amid a spike in novel coronavirus infections, ending hopes that a new Premier League season could get underway this month.

It had been planned to start the season on February 26 but it has been indefinitely postponed and could only begin in July.

No league matches have been played in Botswana since March 1 last year when the league was suspended with 10 rounds remaining to be played.

But the ban will not affect the African Confederation Cup third round clash between Jwaneng Galaxy and Orlando Pirates of South Africa, who meet on February 14 in Botswana before a return match in Johannesburg seven days later.

Last week, the Botswana Football League Transformation Committee called for a suspension of plans to start the league because of the rise in COVID-19 related deaths, including that of former national team coach David Bright.