Africa-Press – Malawi. Netball Association of Malawi (Nam) was caught by surprise after only four players reported for Malawi National Netball Team’s camping in Lilongwe Wednesday.
This is a setback to Queens coach Peace Chawinga-Kaluwa, who proposed periodical camps in readiness for Birmingham Commonwealth Games slated for July 28 and August 8 this year.
Sources said Nam was busy engaging the players who have not yet reported for camping to change their mind to avoid being overlooked in the future. “Nam is now calling some clubs to force their players to report for camping or risk the repercussions which include national team omission,” said the source.
Some Queens players confided in The Daily Times this week that they will not report for camping following non-payment of their game allowances amounting to K9 million after the side participated in the Africa Netball Cup and Pent Series in Namibia in November last year.
Both Chawinga-Kaluwa and Nam General Secretary Isaac Chimwala confirmed that only four players reported for camping but they did not give the identity of the players. Chawinga-Kaluwa said it was difficult to comment on how the camp started following the low turn-up.
“We have started camping. Unfortunately only four players have reported for camping. We are in a meeting trying to verify things and also to see how best to address the issue,” she said. On his part, Chimwala said they were hopeful that the players could still report for camping.
“It appears that there are other forces that are influencing the players not to report for camping. Most of those players have arrived in Lilongwe but they are not yet in camp. We are following up with them,” he said.
Some of the players that were called into camp include Hope Mdala, Chifuniro Moses, Shira Dimba, Molly Chisambiro, Mary Nyirenda, Mada Mkandawire, Lauren Ngwira, Thandie Galeta, Tendai Masamba, Jane Chimaliro
Sindi Simtowe, Shabel Bengo, Jesca Mazengera, Salomy Nkhoma, Cynthia Khunga, Alinafe Kamwala and Colleta Mwalilino. Chawinga-Kaluwa will also monitor Queens’ foreign trio of Mwawi Kumwenda, Joyce Mvula and Towera Vinkhumbo through their respective clubs.
The development comes after Nam reinforced the coaching panel by incorporating former Queens defender Ellenour Mapulanga and Blue Eagles Sisters Coach Madanno Tepetheya.
Sam Kanyenda has been re-appointed as Queens’ Technical Director. Civonets Coach Whyte Mulilima remains Chawinga- Kaluwa’s assistant. The notable missing figure is umpire Titus Wankhama who was the team’s fitness trainer.
Peter Fote is a Sports Journalist with huge experience in radio and Television reporting, production and presentation. He once worked with Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) and is currently working for Times Media Group.