Malawi will send netball, swimming, table tennis and athletics to the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in Australia to be held from April 4 to 15.
Of the four disciplines, only netball has qualified on merit after doing well at the qualification games held in Uganda last year while the others will participate on solidarity.
Malawi Olympic Committee (MOC) president Oscar Kanjala yesterday said they opted for swimming, table tennis and athletics to go on solidarity ticket because other codes seemed not ready and “we could not force them”.
About 40 Malawian athletes and officials are expected to take part in the games this year.
MOC has over 20 Olympic sports affiliated to it, but most of them failed to make the grade.
The Olympics body’s administrative secretary Naomi Chinatu said: “Organisers of the Commonwealth Games have set the bar high. They want the games to be more competitive and that is why most sports codes have to go through qualification stage to participate.
“In Malawi only netball qualified.”
In contrast, fellow Southern African country, South Africa, will send 16 sports codes, including athletics, badminton, bowling, boxing, cycling (mountain bike, road, track), gymnastics, hockey, netball, rugby, shooting, table tennis, triathlon, weightlifting and wrestling.
Chinatu said MOC has organised a two-week camp before departure for the four sports codes.
She said normally sports associations are responsible for organising and funding their preparations and that MOC just comes in to assist.
Meanwhile, the Athletics Association of Malawi (AAM) has released a list of names to begin camp training ahead of the games.
AAM general secretary Frank Chitembeya said they are hoping to camp mid February to select the final team.
“We have the Mzuzu Championship next week which will also be used to prepare for the games in Australia after which we plan to start residential camp. We have limited funds but we hope to work with MOC,” he said.
The athletes include Happy Ndacha Mcherenje (full Marathon), Chancy Master (5 000 metres), Cecilia Mhango (1 500m), Tereza Master (full marathon), Kefasi Kasiteni Chitsala (10 000m), Golden Gunde (400/200m), Benedict Makumba (800m), Stuart Banda (1 0000m), Khumbo Makwakwa (100m), Grevazio Mpani (5 000m), Mercy Malembo (5 000m), Nalicy Chirwa (5000 meters), Dalitso Gunde (800m), Mike Tebulo (full marathon), Harry Kamwera (full marathon), Moneyi Chingaipe (1 500m), Austin Sukali (800m), Charles Gama, (200m), John Kayange (full marathon). n