Brave Hearts Basketball Club, formerly known as Rejects has outlined a comprehensive basketball development plan that if successfully implemented will help to bring back the old glory days of basketball in the country.
Basketball used to be the most followed sport after football in Malawi but over the decade the sport has sank to its lowest form in terms of both standards and following due to factors ranging from poor administration to lack of support.
In an effort to bring back the old glory days, a group of basketball enthusiasts from Lilongwe teamed up last year to form a model basketball club known as Rejects, which has just changed to Brave Hearts.
The sole purpose behind the team’s formation, according to club chairman Griffin Kalua was to promote and develop the game of basketball through sponsorships, coaching clinics, exchange visits and improvement of basketball infrastructure in schools, institutions and centres that used to be attractive during the glory days of the sport.
Enjoying financial backing from G.Y Imports and Exports- a local company dealing in furniture, ICT equipment, building materials, stationary and other office/household items, the club has already fulfilled a number of objectives by organising tournaments in Lilongwe, Mzuzu, Salima and Kasungu, including the recent memorial tournament for late Lawrence Chakholomana, who was a basketball promoter.
The club has also been courting foreign teams from Botswana and Tanzania through international friendly games. A couple of weeks ago, the club played friendly games against some top Tanzanian basketball sides in Dar-es-Salaam and the Tanzania clubs will in turn be visiting Malawi later this month.
Though the team lost in both of its assignments in Tanzania, its management insists the purpose is not winning games.
“We are not there for results but to promote and develop the game of basketball right from the grassroots. Basketball infrastructure in most of our local institutions is in bad state and teams are lacking equipment like balls and uniforms. We want to help in addressing some of these problems and also promote discipline and fair play,” said club secretary Daud Hussein flanked by his captain Dominic Munyenyembe.
Apart from the outlined initiatives, the club also disclosed plans to open a sports centre within the city, where basketball equipment and other sports equipment will be sold.
“We have actually procured some of the equipment and started selling but we are looking for a proper place where people will be coming to buy the equipment. All proceeds from the sales will be going towards the development of basketball,” said Kalua.
Meanwhile, the Brave Hearts have announced the official launch of the club, slated for Civo Basketball Court on November 29, 2015.
Making the announcement, the three club officials said they have organised a big launch to be spiced up by an international basketball tournament involving top Malawian and Tanzanian basketball teams.
East Zone I, who recently won an inter-province championship in Tanzania and West Zone III, who were second runners-up are the Tanzanian sides coming for the tournament.
“It will be a big and colourful event with a lot of surprises and some high profile people including Sports Council and Basketball Association of Malawi (Basmal) officials will be in attendance,” said Kalua.
A representative for the Tanzanian clubs, Karabani Waukweli was in the country this week to finalise arrangements for the two teams’ visit.
“We had a nice time with members from Brave Hearts when they visited Tanzania and we are looking forward to a great tournament on 29thNovember. However, I have a warning for the Malawian teams- We are not coming as tourists but to win the tournament,” declared Waukweli in an interview before his departure at Kamuzu International Airport.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :