Malawi international Limbikani Mzava is on the verge of failing to fulfil his Flames assignment for a fourth time in a row after missing a flight in South Africa due to an expired Covid-19 negative test certificate.
Football Association of Malawi (FAM) competitions and communications director Gomezgani Zakazaka confirmed the development in an interview from Sudan.
He said: “Basically, to get into Sudan you need a Covid-19 negative certificate acquired not more than 72 hours. It seems he had a certificate more than 72 hours.
“He says he missed communication from our team manager [Clement Kafwafwa] to present a certificate that is not more than 72 hours.
“He says he went to do the test with the rest of his teammates at AmaZulu when he got the call-up and he thought that was enough.”
Zakazaka said they were trying to check if the defender can make it to Sudan after getting tested yesterday.
“We are looking at the options. We are trying to get him on the next flight to Sudan once he gets the certificate.
“If he gets a flight to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia he may be able to make it to Sudan by Tuesday afternoon and train with the team,” he said.
If Mzava misses the qualifier, it will be the fourth time that he has failed to feature for the Flames after promising to show up.
The defender’s last competitive match for the Flames was a 3-0 loss to Morocco in 2018 in Afcon qualifier which resulted in a fall out with Belgian coach Ronny Van Geneugden.
After the departure of Geneugden, Mzava has on three occasions excused himself from Flames call-ups, citing several reasons, including injuries and travel hitches.
He was unable to play the last Flames match against Burkina Faso in November 2020 after testing positive for Covid-19.
In total, he has missed Flames matches against Botswana, South Sudan, Uganda, Burkina Faso (twice), Ethiopia, Zambia, Zimbabwe (friendly) since 2018.
Meanwhile, the rest of the South Africa-based players—Frank Gabadinho Mhango (Orlando Pirates), Dennis Chembezi, Khuda Muyaba (Polokwane City), Gerald Phiri and Richard Mbulu (Baroka FC) flew to Ethiopia before connecting to Khartoum.
Europe-based trio of Francisco Madinga (Gola Dila-Georgia), Peter Banda and Charles Petro (Sheriff Tiraspol—Moldova) were the first to arrive in Sudan on Monday.
Coach Meck Mwase said he was glad that the players had made it to Sudan ofthecrucial qualifier.
“The rest of the players are here. The only one who is not here is Mzava. But we are hopeful that he will make it as well,” he said.