MASERU – Lesotho Snooker and Pool Association (Lespa) was last month forced to indefinitely postpone its finals due to lack of funds, the Lesotho Times can reveal.
The finals were scheduled for March 31 at Victoria Hotel but had to be postponed at the last minute due to a cash crisis.
Lespa needed M30 300 for trophies, medals, prize monies as well as individual awards.
“We were forced to postpone the finals and district league awards ceremony owing to a financial crisis that has hit the association,” Nqheku Matolo, the Lespa president, said.
He said they could not get a sponsor to take care of their expenses.
They also failed to raise any funds from the Lesotho Sports and Recreation Commission (LSRC).
“The commission is also waiting for subvention from government in order to help us.”
Matolo said the finals would be held as soon as the association gets its quarterly subvention from the government.
“We can only be able to hold the finals and awards ceremony after LSRC deposits money into our account,” he said.
Sixteen teams — seven from Maseru and Leribe, Mohale’s Hoek and Mafeteng — were each supposed to send three teams to compete for the national championship title.
Matolo said the postponement of the finals had negatively affected the sport since this was the first time Lespa had been forced to shelve a competition.
“It negatively affected the morale of our teams as they thought we had cancelled the games altogether.
However, they are now slowly beginning to understand that this is just an indefinite postponement,” Matolo said.
The winner in the Top 16 finals will walk away with a trophy, prize money and gold medals while the first runner-ups will get prize money and silver medals.
The second runner-up will receive prize money and bronze medals while teams from fourth to the last will also get different prize monies.
Each district champion will be awarded a trophy and runner-ups pool equipment.
There were also individual prize awards for best player (cue stick), best dressed team (table cloth) as well as best referee (cue stick).
Meanwhile, Lesotho was voted into the All Africa Pool Association (AAPA) secretariat office during elections held in February.
The elections were held in Gauteng, South Africa.
Matolo was elected general secretary of the association.