Ken Dzekedzeke moved from a training session aide for former Southern Region Cross Country Championships titleholder, his late sister Mandaliza in 1986, to become national champion in 800 metres for years.
â€œThen, my sister was preparing to defend her Regional Cross Country Championship title. But after I noticed that I could beat her during the training sessions, I also developed interest to join the sport,â€ said Dzekedzeke.
From that time, he made headway in athletics, especially in the 400 metres and 800 metres to the effect that the same year he contested and became champion in both categories at zonal level during the schools track and field contests as a pupil at Nkolokoti Primary School.
The following year, he won the schoolsâ€™ 800 metres events and attracted the attention of British athletics trainer Frank Gallagher who polished him to become a formidable runner both locally and internationally.
â€œWith the skills I got from Gallagher, I managed to bring home silver from the Independence Celebration Games in Mozambique in 1987.
â€œThe same year, I set Malawiâ€™s new record of 1: 49 minutes in 800 metres at the All African Games in Kenya despite being down with malaria three days before the event. Up to now, no Malawian athlete has matched that record,â€ he said.
Despite stuttering at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, South Korea and the 1991 All African Games in Egypt, Dzekedzeke managed to win a scholarship to study at the University of Mainz in Germany where he got a diploma in athletics coaching.
â€œUpon my return from Germany in 1993, I concentrated on coaching athletes such as Catherine and Agnes Chikwakwa and Francis Munthali up to 2003 when I quit due to pressure of work. Nevertheless, I was named as head coach for local athletes at the Beijing Olympics in China in 2008,â€ said Dzekedzeke, who is also an executive member of the Malawi Olympic Committee (MOC).