The Malawi Queens on Wednesday began their warm up matches ahead of next week’s 2019 Netball World Cup with a 44-57 loss to the hosts, England.
The match, played at Manchester Arena, featured Towera Vinkhumbo-Nyirenda, Grace Mwafulirwa, Thandie Galeta-Saenda, Bridget Kumwenda, Jane Chimaliro and Sindie Simtowe Msowoya.
The result comes a few days after the Queens dropped from sixth to ninth on the latest International Netball Federation (INF) World Rankings that have also seen third-ranked England being displaced from second place by Jamaica’s Sunshine Girls.
The Queens are also expected to take part in the Quad Series as part of enhancing their World Cup preparations.
They will play against eighth-ranked Northern Ireland, 11th placed Barbados and 12th ranked Wales.
Netball Association of Malawi (NAM) general secretary Carol Bapu said: “The test matches are important for the Queens to fine-tune their World Cup preparations”.
While describing the test matches as a relief for the Queens, netball analyst Wesley Namasala said the latest 13-basket loss to England should be a concern ahead of the global showpiece.
“These preparatory games are a solace for the Queens to gauge their strength because they only had a few days of camping.
“However, their latest loss should be a warning sign for the national team to pull up socks because England managed a 13-basket win despite being cautious on featuring their strong squad,” she said.