Eleven players have been selected to represent Team Malawi at the 10-day ITF/CAT Southern Africa Junior Circuit Tennis Championship in Windhoek, Namibia from January 9 2017.
According to Junior Tennis Federation (JTF) national coordinator Hackson Mmethiwa, the six boys and five girls, will compete in the Under- 14 and Under-16 categories.
“Those that have been selected performed well in various local tournaments across the country. So far, we are happy that ITF has already sent us funds for transport. We are just waiting for Lawn Tennis Association of Malawi [Ltam] to finalise other travelling logistics,” he said yesterday.
The 11 are Ramesh Banda, Kelvin Kachepa, Derek Gamula, Golden Kamanga, Sekalani Makuluni, Austin Phiri, Linda Msiska, Mwai Kadammanja, Savannah Mkandawire, Atupele Kadammanja and Dana Nyirenda.
Team coach Thompson Mtengula expressed satisfaction with the squad.
“The names selected are those always available on the courts. It is our hope that we will do better,” he said.
Ltam president Grey Mang’anda described the country’s participation in the tournament as important, emphasising that support should be made available to the team.
“Of course, we are yet to make significant strides due to limited sponsored tournaments, but, we still need to provide the team all the necessary support. The tournament will expose the country’s young talent at international stage,” he said.
Malawi had nine representatives at the 2015 Junior Circuit competition in Gaborone, Botswana.
Banda was the outstanding performer for Malawi in the previous tournament having won the singles gold and bronze medals in the Under-12 boys’ category.
Apart from winning the two medals in the singles events, he also clinched silver after teaming up with his fellow Mzuzu-based player Sekelani Makuluni in the doubles contest. n