Slow start for Lesotho athletes in New Delhi

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MASERU — Lesotho has made a slow start to the Commonwealth Games with all of its athletes failing to get past the first hurdles in their respective disciplines.

Lesotho’s 28-strong team arrived in New Delhi last Friday with hopes of improving on Lesotho tally of one medal from the last Games in Melbourne in 2006.

Overall Lesotho has three medals with Thabiso Moqhali’s win in the marathon in Kuala Lumpur in 1998 being the only gold.

Golden Girl Selloane Tšoaeli will begin her campaign tomorrow in the women’s high jump competition and Lesotho will be hoping the African champion does well to improve on what has been a disappointing performance so far.

The Commonwealth Games, which started on Sunday and will end next Thursday, have been criticised for poor preparations and facilities while it was reported Lesotho’s athletes were unhappy with their per diems.

One of the medal hopefuls boxer Moshoeshoe Mokhachane was beaten 5-2 by New Zealand’s Anthony Taylor in the light welter weight qualification bout.

Another boxer Tšepo Lepoqo also lost his bout yesterday to Luke Jackson from Australia in 60kg lightweight class while middleweight Lungile Dyamdeki lost a close battle 5-3 to New Zealander Nathon McEwen.

Dyamdeki’s performance was the best as he came from behind in cat-and-mouse affair to level the bout at 3-3 but he ran out of steam to lose to the highly rated McEwen.

Today is Neo Tamahane’s turn when he takes on Dexter Jordon from Guyana while bantamweight boxer Thabiso Nketu will face Australia’s Ibrahim Balla.

Welterweight boxer Paneng Kokole will battle Malaysia’s Muhamad Farkhan.

Things have also not been rosy in the pool.

Lesotho’s two swimmers Khosi Mokhesi and Boipelo Makhothi struggled with a lack of preparation and this showed.

Mokhesi and Makhothi were unable to progress past the qualification heats of the 100 metres breaststroke, on Tuesday, and the 100 freestyle yesterday finishing off the pace in both events.

Both will compete in the 50 metres breaststroke and freestyle.

In tennis Nthabiseng Nqosa lost in straight sets 6-0, 6-0 to India’s Venkatesha Poojashree while Pinki Montlha lost 6-0, 6-1 to another Indian, Chakravarthi Rushi.

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