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Ticket scandal hits Rollers

Publishing Date : 19 November, 2018


Still smarting from a shock home defeat at the hands of Orapa United, Township Rollers appears to be heading for another collision course, this time with premier league offices over a burning issue of complimentary tickets.

WeekendSport has established that Rollers is not only maddened by the loss against their emerging rivals, but are also infuriated by what appears to be a deliberate move to swindle the club its revenue from ticket sales. Sources told this publication that Rollers has requested the premier league offices to investigate the issue of complimentary tickets which allegedly took place hours before Rollers-vs Orapa United clash played over the past weekend at the National Stadium.

It is said some of Rollers officials caught individuals illegally selling complimentary tickets for the Orapa United clash. Reports   further state that these tickets formed part of the football complimentary vouchers that Rollers gives the premier league before playing a scheduled fixture. It is said such complimentary tickets, as per the norm were supposed to be distributed by premier league Chief Executive Officer (CEO)  to various stakeholders.

WeekendSport has discovered that Rollers gave the league a total of 170 complimentary tickets. 50 were for Botswana Telecommunication Corporation (BTC) who are the headline sponsors. 40 of the 170 tickets were to be given to Btv who are broadcast partners of the league. 20 tickets were meant to be distributed amongst premier league and other unspecified guests. BFA was to get a total 10 complimentary tickets while other unnamed sponsors were to get a total of 50.

However, effort to get hold of the number of tickets allegedly sold by the individuals proved futile. Rollers strongly feel the matter has to be investigated thoroughly because complementary tickets cannot be sold and that the unfortunate incident on its own drags the name of football in muddy places while club revenues are seriously affected.

This publication has also intercepted the Rollers letter en route BPL offices. It reads in part, “please be informed that on the 9th of   November, we gave premier league office 170 complimentary tickets….on the day of the game one of our security guards caught a lady selling a few of these complimentary tickets.  May we request you to investigate the matter and revert back to us the earliest…”

Efforts to seek more clarity from Rollers were unsuccessful. The club media liaison Phempheretlhe Pheto said he has just returned from an international trip and is still yet to be informed of what happened during his absence. At the time of going to print, Rollers general managaer Sydney Magagane had not answered his phone despite repeated attempts to reach him. On one hand, BPL CEO Thabo Ntshinogang was not available for comment. He was reported to be out of the country.

The football fraternity is however waiting in bated breath to see if the BPL will nip the ticketing issue on the bud. This is precisely the case more because Jagdish Shah is the chairman of the premier league board and is also the president of Township Rollers. Rollers are still on top of the league standings with 32 points from 13 games.  If records are anything to go by, they are on course to defend the title. At this stage last season they had recorded 28 points.



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