Botswana plan Africa Cup of Nations camp in Qatar

By Mtokozisi DubeBBC Sport, Gabarone
Botswana coach Stanley Tshosane
Botswana coach Stanley Tshosane says the planned camp in Qatar is not what he wanted for his team in their build-up to the Africa Cup of Nations

Africa Cup of Nations debutants Botswana will travel to South Africa, Qatar and Cameroon to prepare for the finals in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.

But their coach is not happy with the plans, having drawn up his own scheme involving trips to Brazil and Kenya.

"This is not what I had wanted for the team, but I just have to be content with what we've been offered," Stanley Tshosane said.

The squad will be based in Doha for 10 days, beginning on 26 December.

Before that they will spend two weeks in Rustenberg in South Africa, training at the Royal Bafokeng Sports Campus.

Botswana will take on Ghana, Mali and Guinea in Group D at the Cup of Nations and will be based in the south-eastern Gabonese city of Franceville.

Despite Tshosane's reservations, the Botswana Football Association (BFA) believes the training camp will provide the right build-up to the biggest challenge their national team has ever faced.

"We chose Qatar because the Aspire Academy where the team is going to camp is one of the best sports academies in the world, with world class facilities and equipment which will benefit the team," the BFA President David Fani told the BBC.

"We also chose Qatar because of the weather - we want our players to get used to playing in the hot weather because it will be hot in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea."

The Zebras shocked the continent in the easy way they qualified for the tournament and are determined to make a similar impact on the finals next year.

After South Africa and Qatar, the Zebras will go home for a friendly match against Zimbabwe on 8 January before heading to Cameroon for final preparations for the finals.

"We are convinced that if the team go through the entire programme [that we have planned], they will be in a better shape," Fani said.

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