Champions of the 2022 FISD International Volleyball Tournament went away with medals and half a million Kwacha in both men’s and ladies’ categories as opposed to 2 million Kwacha as earlier indicated by the tournament organisers.
Wolves from Lilongwe beat defending champions, Mbeya Best VI, from Tanzania by 3 sets to 2 in the finals while Prison Leopards from Zambia beat defending champions Wolves Ladies by 3 sets to 1.
Coach for Wolves men’s team, Sakurayi Mbanda, said his side was very ready for Mbeya Best VI in the finals.
“We had a good show. Given resources and time, there is a lot of potential for volleyball in the country as shown in this year’s tournament. There is no substitute to hard work and so commitment and hard work has seen us clinching the championship.
“This tournament is a good measure and a barometer of where we are going as a nation. For Wolves, having two teams and both of them playing in the finals is an endorsement to the project that we are doing,” explained Mbanda.
And coach for Zambia’s Prison Leopards, Muluti Barry, said it felt good to become champions in the very first year of participation.
“Our Commissioner General in Zambia instructed us to come here and be number one and nothing else. Every game we played was tough. We were pressed like we have never been pressed before. Through this tournament, we have had good preparation for Zone VI games that we are hosting in Zambia in December this year,” he explained.
But at the reception at Grand Palace Hotel on Sunday night, when champions were expected to pocket K2 million each, it was surprising that they were given K500, 000.00 each.
Quizzed on what triggered the development, Organising Chairperson Killy Musukwa, said FISD Company Limited failed to honour the budget that was presented this year and instead stuck to last year’s budget.
“We had a good tournament from Friday to Sunday. It is encouraging to see a Malawian team in the men’s category becoming champions. This simply shows that our volleyball is developing.
“It’s true we presented a budget that could see the champions getting K2 million. Unfortunately, the sponsor opted to stick to last year’s budget. Some teams from Zimbabwe declined to come at the eleventh hour when we told them the prize money had been slashed down,” Musukwa explained.
Moyale Barracks Volleyball Team finished third in the men’s category this year.
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