Malawi Queens Australia-based star Mwawi Kumwenda was at the weekend sidelined as her club Melbourne Vixens won Super Netball’s Team Girls Cup due to that country’s Covid-19 health and safety protocols.
The shooter was conspicuously missing in Vixens’ four matches at the weekend on the way to the pre-season cup championship.
Vixens announced that the Queens shooter was sidelined due to Covid-19 related issues.
A statement from the club reads in part: “Unfortunately, Mwawi Kumwenda was not available to play due to health and safety protocols. MJ [Mwawi] is isolating in line with Victorian Government guidelines relating to close contacts.”
In an interview yesterday, the gangly shooter said she was in isolation because her friend recently tested positive for the virus.
However, her absence did not stop Melbourne Vixens from narrowly beating West Coast Fever 45-43 in the final at newly-built State Netball Centre in Parkville.
Vixens flexed their muscles in the first two days of Team Girls Cup
recording three straight wins and finishing in top spot in Pool A to book a date with West Coast Fever in Sunday’s final.
On the first day, Melbourne Vixens defeated Queensland Firebirds 45-37 in the opening match.
They went on to beat NSW Swifts 32-26 in the second group match before seeing off Sunshine Coast Lightning 44-38 in the last match to top the pool.
Australia’s ABC News reported that though Vixens missed Mwawi, they stood their ground to announce a comeback in Super Netball after fishing with just two wins last season.
“In the absence of Mwawi Kumwenda [health and safety protocols] the combination between Rahni Samason and Ruby Barkmeyer was on song, turning up the heat when it counted,” ABC.com reported.
“Samason finished with 25 goals from 28 attempts, including five super shots, while Barkmeyer chimed in with 10 goals from as many attempts.”
Mwawi is expected to return to action once cleared ahead of the Super Netball season kick-off this weekend