The scarcity of lawn tennis competitions for senior players has forced former national champion Patricia Matola to embrace netball as her favourite sport.
The 19-year-old Malawi Defence Force (MDF) soldier confirmed the development on Sunday after playing as centre-court player for Zomba-based Triggers Sisters, who lost 111-17 to Bingu Tigresses in the OG Issa Southern Region Netball League (SRNL) at Blantyre Youth Centre (BYC).
Matola said she last participated in a tennis competition last year, when she dethroned Mary Luhanga. She had been winning local competitions annually since 2007 until she lost the title to Luhanga in 2011.
“It is painful to have only one tennis competition (Puma Energy Open Championships) for us, senior players, annually and I thought of becoming a netballer to remain active as a sportsperson,” she said.
Lawn Tennis Association of Malawi (Ltam) president Duncan Gumbi said on Tuesday that they are still looking around for more sponsorship for senior tennis players in the country.
“It is hard to find more sponsors for senior players nowadays, but we are still trying our best to look around. At present we are focusing much on developing players from the grass roots,” said Gumbi.