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Boxers traumatised after missing qualifiers

Pascalinah Kabi

MASERU — Boxing coach Sebusiso Keketso has called on Lesotho Boxing Association (Laba) to organise counselling sessions for seven local boxers who failed to attend Africa London 2012 Olympic Games qualifiers last Thursday.
The qualifiers end today in Casablanca, Morocco.
Four of the seven boxers — Mokhachane Moshoeshoe, Neo Thamahane, Nturumane Mphahama and Moroke Mokhotho — failed to attend the qualifiers after missing a flight at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg.
Three other boxers, Lungile Dyamdeki, Kokole Paneng and Lemohang Matsepe were excluded from the squad due to lack of funds.
Keketsi said the seven boxers were traumatised and need counselling.
“The boxers are definitely not taking this well,” Keketsi said.
He said the mood within the team was very tense when they were forced to abandon their trip to Morocco on Thursday.
“It was very tense and like I said, we are experiencing a very terrible thing as a boxing family,” Keketsi said.
“That is why there is a serious need to organise a counselling session for these boxers as what they are going through is very painful,” he said.
“Failing to get to Morocco for the qualifiers was like salt added to an injury given the manner in which the trip to Morocco had been handled from the start,” he added.
“It was painful enough to see them hurting while we were leaving for OR Tambo because three of their colleagues had been left behind because of lack of funding and failing to make it at all to Morocco hurt them even more.”
Lesotho is now at the mercy of Wild Card, an organisation that approves applications from countries whose athletes did not qualify for the Olympic Games.
Lesotho is waiting for feedback from Wild Card to approve its application for four athletes, one boxer and a taekwondo player to attend other Olympic qualifiers.
Moshoeshoe Mokake, Lesotho National Olympic Committee’s public relations officer, told a media briefing that they had already filed an application for the six athletes.
The athletes are; Selloane Tšoaeli, Mosito Lehata, ‘Mamoroallo Tjoka and Tsotang Maine (athletics), Lineo Mochesane (taekwondo) and Moroke Mokhotho (boxing).

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