Namibia to host fistball powerhouses
The Continental Club champions of Europe ( TSV Pfungstadt), South America ( Novo Hamburgo) and Africa (Namibia) will meet to determine the best club in the World at this event which is scheduled to take place on 11 and 12 October.
According to Christoph Kubirske, secretary and international team coordinator at the Fistball Association of Namibia, it is the 5th time that Namibia is hosting the International fistball tournament which include the 1995, World Fistball Championships and the 2009, U18 World Championships in Swakopmund.
He said, although this sport code is relatively small in Namibia, the country has been invited to almost all other continental tournaments because Namibia is the only country in Africa with fistball clubs which makes the country’s teams eligible to participate in other continental championships.
“Fistball in Namibia is a small sport code, there are 5 different clubs, three in Windhoek, one in Swakop and one in Walvis bay with three leagues at the time. The A league is the première league, the first league where five teams are participating, the B league where 7 teams are participating, and another under 18 league where another three teams are participating. Its a rather small sports for Namibia but very active sports code,” he said.
He said, most Namibians do not know about the sport, because the sport came over to Namibia from the Germans in 1960. Fistball is open to everyone because it is not an exclusive sport or for any cultural group but it is basically a sport which is introduced to the players by their parents or friends.
“There are about 100 fistball players in Namibia. As fistball is a small code, we do not get big runs from the sports commission or the Ministry of Sports, so the biggest challenges for the Association are the financial challenges,” he said.
He stated that the players finance their own trips and league expenses in order to participate in tournaments. The Association got some sponsorship from Bank Windhoek and Danric Auto to run its league business as smooth as possible.
“The Association had a half a million raffle draw years ago, where we raised some funds from which we basically pay teams who participate in tournaments, we do not pay for the trips but we give them financial incentives and also contribute to the costs to attend these championships,” he added.
He further said that although fistball is a social amateur sport, the training levels and competition especially in Europe is semi professional but there is no money to be earned in the sport like in soccer. “Fistball is a very nice sport, it is very sad that there is only a hand full of people in Namibia who play the sport. But our aim is to get it bigger and see that the sport is still being played in the future. Fistball is a friendly sport, one can make a lot of friends playing fistball. Its like a big family,”said Kubirske who also plays for the SKW fistball team.