Holland-based swimmer Joyce Tafatatha has debuted at the 2014 Doha, Qatar Fina World Championship as part of Malawi Aquatic Union (MAU) futuristic development programme targeting 2016 Olympic Games’ qualification.
MAU opted to send Tafafatha, who is competing in backstroke, free style, for 50 metres and 25 metres, to Doha alongside coach Yona Walesi, after the Sports Council refused to allow swimmers to, alongside other disciplines, participate at the ongoing 2014 African Union Sports Commission Zone V Youth Games in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.
This was despite the association’s apology and Southern African Swimming Federation’s (Cana) plea over late registration.
MAU president Dean Pinto said Tafatatha is being groomed for All Africa Games and the Olympics alongside Amara Pinto, Tayamika Changanamuno, Malaika Trinidad, Michael Swift and Nyakhokho Nsona Junior, hence the Dona participation through internal funding.
“We are targeting All Africa Games and the Olympic Games so that our swimmers do not go there on solidarity. The six swimmers have been on this training programme for 18 months and the programme will continue,” Pinto explained on Thursday.
It has since transpired that despite the Sports Council refusing to entertain MAU’s apology for the delayed registration with the Zimbabwe games, Cana also pleaded with the council to allow Malawi swimmers as the deadline had then not elapsed. n