Malawi National Netball Team star shooter Mwawi Kumwenda has sent out best wishes to her Melbourne Vixens captain Liz Watson, who will miss the 2021 season due to injury.
Watson had surgery on her navicular bone in her foot Wednesday, a development described as a major blow ahead of the season.
Supernetball.com.au quoted the Australian club as revealing that Watson has had a long-standing foot injury which had been managed for the duration of her career but had deteriorated to the point that surgery was the only option.
However, she will remain a part of the Vixens squad this season in an internal leadership capacity.
Writing on her Facebook page, Kumwenda said she would miss playing with Watson.
“Wishing @lizzy.watson all the best for the next few months. I will miss playing with you this year but having you still part of the @melbournevixens will help us!” she wrote.
Watson said she had been enjoying pre-season and looked forward to the season ahead.
“I was looking forward to playing in Melbourne again this year. This news came as quite a shock, but speaking to the surgeon, it was clear that this had to happen now for me to get back out there and play.
“The medical staff at the Vixens and Diamonds have been great in helping me manage this injury, and I thank them for the support so far and know I’m in good hands for my recovery,” she said.
Origin Australian Diamonds Head Coach Stacey Marinkovich said she was devastated when she heard the news but knows the super professional Watson will use this time to push her game even further.
“We are obviously devastated with Liz’s injury. She is an incredible player and has been an integral part of the Diamonds for some time now.”
“She is an absolute professional and I know she will use this time to continue to evolve herself as a player in different ways and, when the time is right, will return to the court.
“I know she is surrounded by a great team of experts both at the Vixens and Diamonds and we look forward to seeing Liz back on court bigger and better,” Marinkovich said.
Vixens will now begin the difficult task of finding a replacement for Watson in time for the team’s Round 1 clash with the West Coast Fever at John Cain Arena on May 1.