Diamonds, Tigresses battle for first round league glory

Defending netball champions Kukoma Diamonds take on rivals First Choice Tigresses tomorrow at Blantyre Youth Centre (BYC) in a potentially explosive Rainbow Paints Blantyre and Districts Netball League (BDNL) match that will determine first round winners.

The two giants are tied on 18 points from nine-straight victories apiece, but Diamonds are at the summit of the 11-team log table on better goal difference of 592 against Tigresses’ 513.

Diamonds (in red) in action against Tigresses

Diamonds assistant coach Noel Mussa yesterday said they cannot afford to lose the match, which is important to their title defence bid.

 “We have left no stone unturned to win this match, which is important on our title defence mission. We will go flat out to win the first round and ensure an easy path to retaining the crown,” said Mussa.

On her part, Tigresses coach Peace Chawinga-Kaluwa said they are also determined to get full points this weekend to avoid being under pressure in the second round.

“We made it clear to everyone in our team that we need to wear the league crown this season and a win against Diamonds this is key and a big step to achieving the feat,” she said.

Diamonds bank their hopes on players such as shooters Alinafe Kamwala and Jessica Mazengera-Sanudi alongside veteran defenders Caroline Mtukule-Ngwira and Towera Vinkhumbo Nyirenda while Tigresses have trust in shooter Sindi Simtowe-Msowoya, wing attacker Beatrice Mpinganjira, and defender Grace Mwafulirwa-Mhango.

The clash will be the last encounter among the four matches BDNL has lined up at the BYC to conclude first round fixtures.

In other matches, Tropical Queens will be up against Serenity Stars and Chilomoni Sisters while Shizaella Queens will take on Chileka Sisters.

BDNL general secretary Annie Hanjahanja-Billie yesterday said netball fans will pay K200 at the gates to watch the matches.

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