Two Lesotho top boxers Moroke Mokhotho and Arena Pakela applications to participate in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics were denied.
This was disclosed when Lesotho National Olympic Committee (LNOC) released their correspondence to the Lesotho Boxing Association on Tuesday. The letter read “…the NOC regrets to inform the NF (National Federation) that the athlete did not receive such slot as countries confirmed their quotas in the category.”
The letter continues:
“The NF is also informed that the NOC was not successful on its application for a Tripartite place for Boxer Moroke Mokhotho.”
The Lesotho Boxing Association confirmed receiving this letter and was very disappointed. Pakela and Mokhotho went to Senegal in 2019 for Africa Olympic qualifiers where all Lesotho boxers failed to qualify for Tokyo 2020.
The second qualifiers were postponed by World Boxing Association (AIBA) because of COVID-19 pandemic.
AIBA concluded to pick boxers according to their rankings in their continents. It is the first time Lesotho participate in the Olympics without boxing since 1996.
Speaking to News4u Sport, Moroke Mokhotho said he was very disappointed he could not participate in the upcoming Olympic which he declared to be his last.
“Nothing we can do, because this COVID-19 had a very negative impact to us athletes, but God knows”. Mokhotho says.
“After failing to secure a spot for Tokyo, I now want to focus on Commonwealth Games (CG) which will be my last as boxer, after CG I am going to retire from boxing.” he said.
“There are good young boxers in the country whom I rate better than myself, I am very optimistic that they will carry where I left.” Mokhotho said.
Lesotho will make history where it will be represented by two athletes who are couple (wife and husband) ‘Neheng Khatala Seutloali and Khoarahlane Seutloali and both of them are marathoners.
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