Delegates from 18 English-speaking African countries met in Lilongwe from Friday to Saturday to brainstorm on their preparations for April’s Commonwealth Games slated for Gold Coast City, Australia.
This was the first time for Malawi to host the meeting which was organised by the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF)— an organisation responsible for the direction and control of Commonwealth Games.
During the two day-meeting, the delegates banged heads on how best to ensure that athletes perform well during the Commonwealth Games.
Malawi’s Minister of Labour, Youth, Sports and Manpower Development, Francis Kasaila, officially opened the meeting and said it was an honour for the country to host such a high profile conference.
Kasaila said time had come for African athletes to prepare well for international competitions.
“The most important thing is to prepare well for international games. If we do not prepare well, it will be difficult for the athletes to perform well,” Kasaila said.
CGF President, Louise Martin, said Africa has the potential to perform well in international tournaments.
Malawi Olympic Committee President, Oscar Kanjala, who is also president of the Malawi Commonwealth Games Association, said the meeting had come at an opportune time as this year’s Commonwealth Games are fast approaching.
“As a country, we are very honoured to host the meeting because it gives us a chance to plan for the Commonwealth Games. The CGA has always been on our side and we are very happy with their support,” Kanjala said.
Team Malawi, which comprises 33 members, will leave for the Commonwealth Games on March 25 but the netball team will leave on March 17 for the final test match at a four-nation tournament in New Zealand.
At the preparatory event, the Queens will line up against Fiji, Jamaica and hosts New Zealand.
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