LOCAL boxing coach, Sibusiso Keketsi, has been awarded the International Boxing Association (IBA) Coaches Instructor status becoming Lesotho’s first coach to bag such an achievement.
This after he completed an IBA Coaches Instructors Course in Helsinki, Finland from 7 to 10 April 2022.
He has now become Lesotho’s most qualified coach with a three-star coaching certificate.
An elated, Keketsi told the Lesotho Times that he was among 11 coaches from across the world who took the course.
“There were only 11 coaches who were invited for the course, and I think I was fortunate to make it onto the list,” Keketsi said.
“I think it was God’s grace. When I received the invitation, I was happy and emotional at the same time because I had not budgeted for the trip. The came on a short notice and I struggled to get financial assistance from the Lesotho Sport and Recreational Commission (LSRC) and the Lesotho National Olympic Committee (LNOC) but my family came into my rescue.
“I would like to thank my wife because she is the one who made the trip a success. It was a very expensive trip, but it was too good to miss.
“The course was only for coaches who had reached level three of coaching. Since instructing is more about teaching, they also wanted someone with a good educational background.”
Now that he has completed the course, he said he was now qualified to recruit and train coaches from anywhere in the world.
As an international instructor, he is expected to serve boxing association from across the world. However, he said Lesotho was at an advantage of firsthand information from IBA.
“I have always been available to help and I am still available to work together with boxing leadership to help grow the sport locally,” he said.
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Keketsi was appointed into the IBA coaches’ committee last year. However, he has been in the boxing field from as far back as 1994 and has won several medals. He was awarded a three-star boxing coaching certificate by IBA in 2014, making him the most qualified boxing coach in Lesotho.
He was crowned the 1996 national junior champion and also won a gold medal at the 1996 Zone VI games.
Among his medals haul is a bronze medal from the 1999 All Africa Games, a gold medal from the 2000 Zone VI games and also a silver medal from the 1999 edition.
He also competed in the 2000 Sydney Summer Olympics and was a quarter-finalist at the 2002 Commonwealth Games.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Physical Education and Sport from the International School of Physical Education and Sports in Cuba (2007).
He studied in Cuba through a scholarship offered by West Indies as a result of the country’s bilateral relations with Lesotho.
He obtained a Masters Degree in Sports Management from the Seoul National University in South Korea in 2016 through a South Korean scholarship.
In 2018, he graduated from the Nippon Sports Science University in Japan with a Coach Developer Certificate.
He has worked for the government from 2007 in the Gender, Youth, Sport and Recreation ministry where he was an assistant recreation officer.
He was promoted to the position of principal sports and recreation officer in 2010 and still holds the post to date.