NAM mum on Mwawi

Netball Association of Malawi (NAM) yesterday said it would not comment on Queens goal shooter Mwawi Kumwenda’s manager Hlupikire Phiri’s request for a meeting regarding the player’s stormy relationship with the association.

NAM recalled Mwawi into the Queens’ squad for the upcoming three international test series against England, but in her letter to NAM, Phiri stated that she had advised the player to wait until the two parties hold “an honest and reflective discussion”.

But when contacted for the association’s position on the matter yesterday, general secretary (GS) Carol Bapu said: “I would rather not comment on the issue for now.”

On her part, Phiri who doubles as Mwawi’s legal adviser, said NAM confirmed receiving her email.

“They responded by acknowledging receipt of my email and that they have taken note of the reservations and that [they] will address them,” she said.

Asked if under the circumstances Mwawi—who travelled to Queens’ camp base Blantyre yesterday from Lilongwe—would join camp, Phiri said: “Let us wait and see, but we really need to meet to iron out all the issues we raised.”

Part of Phiri’s letter to NAM reads: “Thank you for extending an invitation to Mwawi to join camp for the upcoming England test series. As Mwawi’s manager, I acknowledge receipt of your email.

“Much as Mwawi is always excited and committed to represent Malawi and play with the Queens, as her manager and legal adviser, I have advised her to wait until we have a better understanding of what transpired during the last call-up which led to her expulsion from camp.

“Whilst she really wants to play, I personally have reservations at this moment on the availability of a conducive environment for her effective participation, especially when I consider what transpired during the previous call-up and the fact that the circumstances around her expulsion have not been cleared yet.”

It further reads: “I, therefore, request that we first have an honest and reflective discussion to iron out these issues. We need to understand from you what happened, [including the manner in which you undertook your decisions] and how we can move forward amicably for the betterment of national interests that are at stake. Once this is done, I will be comfortable to release Mwawi having the firm assurance that her best interests and the Queens are well safeguarded by NAM.”

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