Netball Association of Malawi (NAM) breathed a sigh of relief yesterday after government finally released K91 million to facilitate the Queens’ participation at the Netball World Cup in Liverpool, England.
The netball governing body’s general secretary Carol Bapu said in an interview yesterday that disbursement means government has given them K113 million.
“We received K22 million a couple of days ago which we used to meet some costs. With the amount we received today [yesterday], we have been given the full financial kit and we are thankful,” she said.
Bapu said the Queens will leave tomorrow with a stopover in Wales to play three test matches before proceeding to Liverpool for the Netball World Cup that begins on July 12.
“Having received the funding , it means our travel plans and the scheduled test matches are intact,” she said.
While in Wales, Malawi will face Trinidad & Tobago, the hosts and Grenada in an International Test Series slated for 4 to 10 July in Cardiff.
Meanwhile, the Malawi National Council of Sports (MNCS) has defended the delay in releasing funds, saying NAM exhausted its annual budget.
“Netball was handed around K300 million in the 2018/19 National Budget.
“It is not that we delay all the times. You need to bear in mind that NAM exhausted its allocation so we had to negotiate for supplementary funding and it takes some procedures,” Mereka said.
He has meanwhile challenged the Queens to improve on their previous achievements. During the last Netball World Cup, Malawi finished on position five
Coach Griffin Saenda said the development is good for the players.
“Now that we are assured that we will leave as planned, it will boost the morale of the players.
“We will use the test matches in Wales to prepare for the World Netball.,” he said.
But Saenda said he was yet to release the names of the squad travelling to the tournament at press time.
Malawi have been paired in group B alongside indomitable New Zealand, Barbados and Singapore.
A total of 16 countries have qualified for the World Cup, with defending champions Australia seeking a record 12th world championship.