Malawi Olympic Team left on Sunday for month-long pre- 2012 London Olympic Games training at Gloucestershire University in the United Kingdom with promises to strive for qualifying time.
The team comprises swimmers Charlton Nyirenda and Joyce Tafatatha; and runners Mike Tebulo and Ambwene Simkonda who is based in the UK.
“I have done a research on the university and it seems they have top facilities. It is a high performance centre and I am sure I will get a qualifying time. I am confident,” said 23-year-old Nyirenda on Saturday. His current best time in 50 metres free style is 27:46 seconds.
Nyirenda admitted that MOCâ€™s pledge for a reward of K1 million (about $4 000) on an athlete to bring a medal was an extra motivation although achieving such a feat was his remote dream.
Having returned from the Cana VI Games in Mozambique with four medals, including two gold, 14-year-old Tafatatha is another main hope for the Malawi team. With her current best time at 28:61:50 seconds, she will compete in 50 metres free style.
“This is my first time that I will be going to the Olympic Games. I am nervous, but it is an experience. It is not every swimmer that gets an opportunity to represent their nation. Hopefully, I can get qualifying time,” said Tafatatha, a student at Saint Andrews International High School.
Malawi Olympic Committee (MOC) vice-president Flora Mwandira is the leader of delegation, but will join the team in the UK later. The games start on July 27.