MALAWI netball team will today enter into a second week of training at Blantyre Youth Centre in which coach Griffin Saenda will focus on tactics and game plans.
Fresh from Botswana where he went as an expatriate to set up that country’s national side, Saenda faces an uphill task to rejuvenate the Queens ahead of the Commonwealth Games-Australia set for 5 to 16 April.
During the first week the coach was working on the girls’ stamina following their poor display at last year’s Fast5 World Series and three friendlies with England.
In camp are 19 local based players seven of which play for Kukoma Diamonds whereas Thunder Queens, Blue Eagles Sisters, Civo Nets and Tigresses have each contributed three players and one is from Mafco.
The squad includes Tigresses’ Sindi Simtowe an experienced and skillful shooter who for the past two-years wasn’t available for national duty due to an injury.
Professional players, Mwawi Kumwenda, Joyce Mvula and Laureen Ngwira will join the team in New Zealand en route to Australia.
Kumwenda plays for Melbourne Vixens in the Australia’s Super Netball while her compatriots Mvula and Ngwira ply their trade in England’s Netball Super League for Manchester Thunder and Northumbria respectively
Queens have their job clear cut and that is to dispel their worst run in years which saw them suffering ten defeats.
Ranked second in Africa, Malawi have no excuse whatsoever as they will use the Taini Jamison Quad Series in New Zealand at the end of the month to make thorough preparations for their campaign at the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
It’s not going to be an easy run for Queens as they are going to face International Netball Federation (INF) top three ranked teams New Zealand and England, Wales, Scotland and Africa Netball Championship holders, Uganda in group B of the 12-day tournament.
Group A has Australia, Jamaica, South Africa, Barbados, Fiji and Northern Ireland.