Just Saying with Matts Haikali

In the world of sports, fairness and equity should be fundamental principles, ensuring that competition thrives on merit rather than the size of one’s pocket.

Unfortunately, in the MTC Premier Netball League, there is a disconcerting trend, with government-funded institutions dominating the league, while community-funded teams struggle to keep pace. Teams such as wanders, united, Black Africa, Tigers used to be competitive, but that’s the story of the past.

Am just saying, this glaring discrepancy is not merely a reflection of superior resources, but a challenge to the core values of sportsmanship and equality that we hold dear.

The MTC Premier Netball League should ideally serve as a platform for talent to flourish, irrespective of the financial backing a team enjoys. It is meant to be a showcase of skill, dedication, and teamwork, where underdogs can rise to the top through sheer determination.

Am just saying while the above should be the ideal situation, the current landscape paints a different picture, where the security forces funded teams have pulled ahead due to their substantial resources, leaving community-funded teams to grapple with limited means.

One of the factors contributing to this imbalance is the financial muscles that this teams have at their disposal. These teams often have access to facilities and full-time professional coaching staff, luxuries that community-funded teams can only dream of.

Am just saying that these athletes who are employees are not burdened with part-time jobs or other financial distractions, enabling them to focus solely on their sport. On the other hand, community-funded teams operate on shoestring budgets, relying heavily on volunteers and ad hoc contributions.

These players from community funded team, often juggle demanding day jobs or studies alongside their netball commitments, leaving them at a disadvantage in terms of training hours and recovery. The teams lack the resources to retain young talent, and they struggle to compete with the superior infrastructure of their counterparts.

Am just saying, what can be done to level the playing field in the MTC Premier Netball League? It is essential that steps are taken to address this growing disparity and uphold the values of fairness and inclusivity in sports. Maybe the corporate sector should step up and provide financial support to community-funded teams. This could be in the form of grants, sponsorships, or partnerships that help cover essential expenses like coaching, training facilities, and travel costs. But it should not be just handouts, there must be a plan from the community teams.

Alternatively, an arrangement where the forces share their resources and expertise with community-funded teams. This could involve partnerships in coaching, mentorship programs, or shared access to facilities, in return for availing talented players to this institution at a cost.

Am just saying, the leadership of the league should Implement regulations that promote equal opportunities for all teams. This will prevent excessive financial dominance from skewing the competition. If this is not checked early, community funded teams will disappear from the scene, which is not what we want.

Am just saying the League should be a reflection of the true spirit of sportsmanship, where dedication and hard work are the ultimate determinants of success. It’s time to bridge the divide and restore the essence of fairness in netball Namibia.

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