THE African Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region 5 Games finally started last Friday but it has been nothing but a shame.
From travelling logistics, games schedules and the overall team performance, it has been sheer disaster.
Lesotho athletes had poor preparations and the results are adequate proof. Our basketball teams have been having it rough since day one losing with huge margins.
It was always going to be challenging for our athletes to play the likes of Angola, Zimbabwe and South Africa, the continent’s heavyweights. Even if we had had good preparations, we would still have struggled.
But as fate would have it, our players have been humiliated and their opponents have been scoring hundreds of baskets while the hosts are struggling to score just 20 points per match.
Before the beginning of the games, it was clear that some of our teams were not ready for the competition and it would have been better to withdraw them to avoid athletes’ humiliation.
The girls’ basketball team has struggled from the first match particularly because seven players tested positive for Covid-19.
I sat and watched our kids trembling, intimidated by the Angolans’ imposing figures. It is not surprising that they only score two points before losing the match by default as three players had to leave the court for fouls while one was injured and the match could no longer continue. Lesotho ended up losing 2-116 to Angola.
The boys team lost their first match 17-89 to Zambia.
Not only did they fail to rise to the occasion, the girls played their first two matches without warming up because they were late.
The only team that pulled a surprise was the gymnastics side which has won silver in tumbling. This is the same team which saw a tumbling track for the first time at the competition venue but still won silver.
Volleyball teams also started their competitions positively and it was promising when they won their early matches.
However, most of the logistics are in a state of disaster with some of the officials pulling out of the games due to alleged poor treatment by organisers.
This is a true but bad reflection on our government. This is how they operate. Authorities really don’t care about the games or the athletes.
It is just unfortunate that people who had chance to do right by our athletes are sitting in the comfort of their homes while athletes are the ones suffering and getting humiliated.