No Afcon for Malawi women’s football team

Malawi will not take part in the women’s Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) that starts next year in Ghana following delays in registration by the Football Association of Malawi (FAM).

The development has disappointed the National Women Football Association (NWFA) who were eyeing the continental tournament.

Malawi’s Tabitha Chawinga in action at the Cosafa Cup in Zimbabwe

“The painful thing is that all the teams we faced during the Cosafa Cup will be taking part in the Afcon games. We really wanted to be there so that we can measure our progress. But FAM told us they failed to register in time,” said NWFA president Siveria Chalira.

She also bemoaned lack of international friendlies for the women’s team which has not been active since September when it participated at Cosafa Cup.

“Due to limited resources, FAM is unable to finance friendly games. It’s unfortunate, but we can’t force a situation. We are under FAM and government can’t fund us directly unlike the situation with the netball national team,” said Chalira.

She, however, said they will ask government to fund them for the African Zone VI Games.

“The Zone VI Games are the responsibility of government and we plan to send the Under-20 to the games and hopefully government will fund us,” she said.

She said her committee is using the FAM Cup tournament to identify Under-20 players for the Zone VI Games.

Speaking soon after the national women football team returned from Zimbabwe from the Cosafa games, FAM vice-president James Mwenda said his institution will do everything to ensure the national team is active.  n

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