LESOTHO finished third at this year’s Confederation of Southern African Taekwondo Association (COSATA) Championship in eSwatini on 6 and 7 December.
Lesotho finished behind Mozambique and the host eSwatini who finished first and second respectively. Zimbabwe and Botswana finished fourth and fifth respectively.
Lesotho was represented by 10 athletes who all brought home medals from their different categories.
Ramosoeu Nkuebe (68kg) brought home a silver medal in the senior category while his mates Tebello Mootisa (49kg) and ‘Mapuleng Tiheli (57kg) won silver and bronze respectively in the same category.
In the males’ junior category, Rethabile Shea (55kg) and Khojane Ratlali (80kg) also bagged silver medals.
Teboho Phasumane (67kg) scooped a gold medal in the junior females’ competition while Keabetsoe Monyalotsa (47kg) brought home a silver medal.
Kamoho Rapotsane (55kg) won gold in the male cadets section.
Another gold medal in cadets section came from ‘Mamotšeare Ntube (53kg) in the ladies’ competition. In same category ‘Matšoala Mohloai (33kg) won a silver medal.
Lesotho team manager, Relebohile Moletsane told the Lesotho Times that even though all the players won medals, Lesotho’s overall performance was unconvincing.
“We performed better in the juniors and cadets categories but a lot still needs to be done in the seniors,” Mohloai said.
“We normally come out tops in this competition and this is the first time that we have come out third and that is an indication that we performed poorly.”
Lesotho went to the games on the back of poor preparations after the Lesotho Taekwondo Association (LTA) struggled to finance their preparations.
So poor were the preparations that even the team was assembled just a day before departure after the intervention of the Lesotho National Olympic Committee (LNOC).
But Moletsane said poor preparations cannot be an excuse.
“The players must not wait for competitions for them to start training. They should be training all the time and should always be ready for national team callups,” Moletsane said.