Chess Association of Malawi (Chessam) has sponsored Joseph Mwale based in South Africa and Ellen Mpinganjira to take part in the Zone 4.3 individual chess tournament in Antananarivo, Madagascar from April 27 to May 4.
The two players are expected to leave tomorrow for the tournament which will draw 14 countries from southern Africa.
Speaking in an interview on Tuesday, Chessam president Susan Namangale said they got K2.7 million from fundraising activities.
“Chessam, through its fundraising activities, managed to source funds to support the two players as well as Chessam president who is key to the event as this is an avenue for Zone 4.3 leaders to discuss pertinent issues for chess growth in the zone and Africa as a whole.
“This is the first Zone 4.3 tournament since the new administration was ushered into office,” she said.
The Zone 4.3 tournament, according to chess-rated player Linda Jambo, is a gateway to acquire International Master qualification.
“These are competitions that can provide us a forum to expose our potential on the international stage. It would be good if we have a good number of representatives,” she said.
Malawi has other potential candidates in Alfred Chimthere,Chiletso Chipanga, Petros Mfune and Joseph Nyambalo in men’s category and Daisy Nkhoma, Anne Simwawa and Tupokiwe Msukwa in the women’s category.
Malawi National Council of Sports (MNSC) executive secretary George Jana said it is a pity that Chessam is failing to send more representatives to such tournaments.
“It is the expectation of the council that associations participate in local and international competitions to grow the sport using own generated or any money from the government. It is a pity that they cannot generate enough to have a good number of players on the trip,” he said.
On his part, Mwale promised to do well in the competition.
“It is a great honour to be considered to represent my country. I have prepared well to earn the needed results,” he said.
In December 2016, Yewo Sanga and Kezzie Msukwa Junior represented the country at Africa Schools Chess Championship in Lusaka using their own resources after Chessam also failed to raise K4 million for a 15-member junior chess team.