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Sweet return

Queens back to winning ways after Uganda loss

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Peace Chawinga Kaluwa

Malawi National Netball Team bounced back from Tuesday’s humiliating defeat to Uganda by beating Pent Series hosts Namibia 64-43 at Patrick Iyambo Police College in Windhoek Tuesday.

The winning margin only underlined Namibia’s progress in the game as they narrowed the gap with the Queens, who are ranked sixth in the world.

Malawi used to whip the Desert Jewels with huge margins but, this time around, the hosts went down with a respectable margin of 21.

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Queens coach Peace Chawinga-Kaluwa made one change to the team that lost to Uganda 59-43 by handing wing attacker Flora Chipeta her first start at the tournament.

Chipeta replaced experienced Bridget Kumwenda and she did not disappoint as she linked up with Shira Kapasula at centre court to supply seasoned attackers Joyce Mvula and Jane Chimaliro with some telling passes.

In defence, Towera Vinkhumbo-Nyirenda, Caroline Mtukule-Ngwira and Grace Mwafulirwa- Mhango were firm in denying Namibia attackers easy access.

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The first quarter ended with the Queens leading 17- 12. Malawi extended the lead to 36-12 at half time.

Chipeta was rested in the third quarter, with Kumwenda taking the slot to help the Queens stretch the lead to 50-35 at the end of the third quarter.

As expected, Chawinga- Kaluwa made several changes in the fourth quarter, resting her key players.

At the end of the match, she said the players were improving with each assignment.

“They played well and I can rate our performance at 60 percent. I am satisfied with how the players performed. We are coming from a Covid situation where we were grounded,” Chawinga- Kaluwa said.

Uganda are favourites to lift the trophy after winning three successive games including beating Zimbabwe. The Queens can finish second if they win their remaining two games.

Games continue today with Malawi taking on Zambia while Uganda will meet Kenya.

Zimbabwe, who also lost to the Queens in their opening match on Monday, lock horns with Namibia.

The competition ends tomorrow with Kenya taking on Malawi while Zambia line up against Zimbabwe.

Tournament favourites Uganda will wrap up their campaign with an encounter with Namibia.

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