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Queens win, face Uganda in must-win game

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Malawi National Netball Team cruised to a comfortable 70-30 win over Trinidad and Tobago Wednesday but they have little time for rest as attention shifts to the match against Uganda tonight.

The Queens needed to beat Trinidad and Tobago to remain in contention for a top six finish in the on-going 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games in England.

Coach Peace Chawinga-Kaluwa recalled captain Caroline Mtukule-Ngwira to partner Towera Vinkhumbo and Martha Dambo whereas Thandi Galeta was deployed at centre court.

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In attack, the Queens started with Mwawi Kumwenda as goal shooter while Sindie Simtowe- Msowoya was at wing attack.

Malawi led 17-8 at the end of the first quarter and 39-15 at half time.

As the match progressed, the Queens made a string of changes including introducing Joyce Mvula to pile more pressure on Trinidad and Tobago.

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This helped them seal a morale boosting win ahead of the crucial tie against the unpredictable Ugandans.

Overall Kumwenda scored 39 baskets with Mvula netting 31.

Chawinga-Kaluwa praised her charges for the win and said the focus had shifted to the Uganda match.

“The players really worked hard but there is no time to rest as we have another crucial game Thurday [today],” she said.

Both Malawi and Uganda know the importance of this match which will see the winner earning a top six-finish.

The two sides last met at the Africa Netball Cup and their match ended in a 44-44 stalemate.

However, Uganda crashed Malawi 59-43 in a Pent Series encounter.

At the on-going Commonwealth Games, Uganda defeated Trinidad and Tobago 62-28 before thumping Northern Ireland 63-26.

However, the She-Cranes lost 56-35 to England and 53-40 to New Zealand.

In contrast, the Queens beat Northern Ireland 54-41 but lost 66-41 to England 66-41 and 69- 50 to New Zealand.

Malawi is also competing in athletics where female runner Asimenye Simwaka qualified for the semifinals of the 400 metres (m) race, slightly improving her personal best record to 52:19 from 52:9 after finishing third in her heat.

The multitalented athlete also reached the semifinals of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics last year.

Her compatriot Farook Mponda failed to qualify in the men’s 400m after clocking 49:12 to finish last in a heat of seven.

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