The unceasing fuel crisis has not spared football with five Peter Mutharika Southern Region Football League (SRFL) games postponed at the weekend due to the scarcity of the commodity.
The Central Region Football League (CRFL), Northern Region Football League (NRFL) and even some Super League teams have also struggled to honour matches due to fuel scarcity. On the other hand, late release of fixtures has also compounded the problem.
Over the weekend, SRFL Premier DivisionÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Prison United and Changalume Barracks FC failed to honour their games against hosts Nchalo United on Saturday and Sunday respectively.
In SRFL Division One, Thondwe United and DyeratuÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s encounter also failed to take place. It was the same story with fixtures involving Print and Chileka Hammers, according to SRFL vice-general secretary Kingsley Simbeye.
Nchalo general secretary Zaheer Issa confirmed on Monday that his charges were idle over the weekend after Changalume and Prison failed to pitch up.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We also had fuel problems last week, but we eventually sourced it after struggles and travelled to Kamuzu Stadium to face Rock United,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said.
CRFL general secretary Benard Chiwiriwiri Harawa on Monday described fuel scarcity as a national problem which has affected most sectors Ã¢â‚¬Å“and football is no exception.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We have had reports of teams not travelling to honour fixtures, but 90 per cent of them have managed to play this season,Ã¢â‚¬Â he noted.
NRFL teams are also encountering fuel problems, sources say.
Last month, the Malawi national football team coach Kinnah Phiri failed to witness a Standard Bank Knock-out Trophy final between Blue Eagles and Moyale Barracks in Lilongwe due to the fuel crisis.
Up the top tier, Super League of Malawi (Sulom) general secretary Williams Banda on Monday admitted that teams are encountering fuel shortage challenges although he said transport problems are not entertained for gamesÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ cancellation.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We encourage our teams to use alternative means of transport. In some of the lower leagues the problem is compounded by late release of fixtures. This does not give teams enough time to plan for away games,Ã¢â‚¬Â Banda claimed.