Netball legend Mary Waya’s trip to the United Kingdom (UK) has opened the door for more Malawian netballers.
English top side, Hertfordshire Mavericks, who have hired Waya temporarily as Shooters’ Coach, have closed in on a short-term signing of Tigresses’ all-rounder Laureen Ngwira and Sharo Kaiche from Thunder Queens.
Ngwira and Kaiche have been drafted in Mavericks’ squad specifically for the Fast5 All-Star Tournament scheduled for September 23 in London, Waya’s UK Manager, Natalie Swift, yesterday confirmed.
“They will come here for a month just to participate in the Fast5 tournament. Hopefully, their visit would open opportunities for them. Sharo has agreed to come and I believe Laureen is also free to come,” Swift said in a telephone interview.
Mavericks have since, on www.mavericksnetball.co.uk, announced their Fast5 squad which includes Ngwira and Kaiche alongside English players Lindsay Keable, Razia Quashie, Zara Everitt, Rose Morgan-Smith, Michelle Drayne, Camilla Buchanan, Sophie Drakeford-Lewis and Kalifa McCollin.
Kaiche and Ngwira could not be reached but a source close to the latter confirmed her trip.
“She wants to go to England and combine netball with studies. She is growing impatient with local netball following the collapse of her move to Alliance Capital Stars.
“Of course, she was ready to return to Tigresses but the chance to play and study in England has forced her to concentrate on the overseas’ move,” the source said.
However, Tigresses Team Manager, Helene Mpinganjira-Tasosa, Monday said she was in the dark about Mavericks’ interest in Ngwira.
“She is still our player and she signed a contract with us until 2019,” she said.
Thunder Queens Coach, Christina Mkwanda-Nsinji, said they were yet to be approached.
“Of course, Sharo is in Lilongwe and she is currently playing basketball. We hope to feature her in some forthcoming games. Nevertheless, we were briefed that she might go to England for netball and studies. But up to now, we haven’t yet received an official letter,” she said.
Waya tried to sign the pair when she was coaching Alliance Capitals Stars (now Serenity Stars) but the deal fell through.
Netball Association of Malawi General Secretary, Carol Bapu, Monday, said she was not aware of the duo’s trip to the UK.
“Of course, the move could happen because Mary Waya is well connected and loved in England,” she said.
Currently, Malawi has one professional netballer in England after Joyce Mvula signed for Manchester Thunder whereas Mwawi Kumwenda plays for Melbourne Vixens in Australia.
A vibrant writer who gives a great insight on hot topics and issues