Morris Ruzivo of Sankoyo Bush Bucks challenged by Lawrence Majawa of Township Rollers
Wednesday Oct 15, 2014. 10:34
A few months ago nobody in football circles would have spoken about Sankoyo Bush Bucks as an elite football team, but things have changed.
The team from little known Sankoyo village has, however, taken the Botswana Premier League by storm in terms of gate revenues and even on the field of play where they have achieved positive results.
This has shown tremendous growth in the league and has made other ‘so called’ minnows in the league to believe and think positively.
In their first game of the league against a not so popular side, Motlakase Power Dynamos, Bush Bucks made a good P61 710 (Botswana Pula). The second highest team in revenue was a little off on just P23 850.
On week three Sankoyo Bush Bucks were still on top with P58 530 against Police X1. Amazingly, this was another fixture against a team that is not a crowd favorite. In week four, and playing a crowd favorite, they made a good P138 290. This is much more than what the more established teams in the league make.
This has been because of different factors; some believe the people in Maun, which is a tourist destination, are simply hungry for football.
According to the Botswana Premier League (BPL) CEO, “the promotion of Sankoyo Bush Bucks to the Premier League has been well received by us because it has seen elite football spreading to the Nhabe Region.
“As you know, previously the National Elite League did not have a representative from that region, so it was a welcome development for the Nhabe Region to have representation in the Premier League.
“Historically, the Nhabe Region has produced some top, award winning athletes, so it was not unexpected for a football team to emerge with the promise to be competitive,” Bennett Mamelodi explained.
The CEO went further to reveal that what Sankoyo Bush Bucks has done better than most Premier League teams is that they have been able to be embraced by the community, not just of the village of Sankoyo, but indeed the entire Nhabe Community. This has translated into unprecedented support as evidenced by the recorded attendance at their home matches.
“Because the community believes they have a sense on ‘ownership’ of Sankoyo Bush Bucks, support comes naturally, creating a solid platform for commercial potential.
“I’m convinced that if handled correctly, Sankoyo Bush Bucks can be a model that can assist the League to develop the Premier League Brand, particularly as we address the burning issue of dwindling crowd attendance.”
Mamelodi concluded by pointing out that there is more to this than just what meets the eye.