Malawi’s locally-based players have started non-residential fitness clinics in preparation for an official camp ahead of the back to back 2023 AFCON qualifiers against Egypt in March.
Malawi will face Egypt away in Cairo on 20th March before hosting the Pharaohs at Bingu National Stadium in Lilongwe on 27th March.
Coach Mario Marinica has sanctioned the clinics, which will be done thrice a week up to 26th January, to keep the players in shape as they are on off season.
The clinics will be held at College of Medicine in Blantyre, Fitness Factory Gym in Lilongwe, Fito for Life Gym in Dedza, Viva Gym in Zomba , Iron bodies Gym in Mzuzu and Sigerege Hotel Gym in Salima.
Mario said, as the local football is on recess, it is imperative that players are kept at the high international standards ahead of the two matches.
“Studies have proven that players lose 10% of the match fitness with a week of inactivity. Moreover, after 12 days of inactivity, blood enzymes associated with endurance performance decreases by 50%.
“Therefore, this program is intended to compensate the loss of players’ match fitness which is as the result of the inactivity due to the extended break. This is very critical to the forth coming back-to-back matches. Our competitors are active, and we have to use this opportunity to catch up,’ he said.
Assistant Coach Patrick Mabedi, Under 17 fitness trainer Chimwemwe Nkhoma and FAM Southern Regional coach Patricio Kulemeka will coordinate the Clinics in the South while Flames Fitness trainer Chikondi Mandalasi will lead the Central Region team that also has Under 20 national team fitness trainer Andrew Mtalimanja and FAM Regional Coach Mc Williams Nkunika.
In the North, Flames Assistant Coach Victor Mphande, Beach Soccer Fitness trainer, and FAM regional Coach Robert Mziza will be in charge of the process.
Marinica has roped in six players from the Under 20 into the programme and these include Joshua Waka, Chawanangwa Gumbo, Innocent Makawano, Festus Duwe and Loyd Alone.
The full list of players eye marked for the programme is as follows:
South: Clever Mkungula, Gomezgani Chirwa, Blessings Mpokera,Alick Lungu, Chimwemwe Idana, Patrick Mwaungulu, Sambani, (Nyasa Big Bullets), Stanley Sanudi,Chiukepo Msowoya, Gaddie Chirwa, Muhammed Sulumba, Miracle Gabeya,Yamikani Chester ( Mighty Mukuru Wanderers) Chikoti Chirwa (Red Lions)
Centre: Charles Thom, Nickson Mwase, Stenie Davie (Silver Strikers) Lawrence Chaziya (Unattached), Paul Ndlovu, Dan Chimbalanga (Mafco), Kelvin Kadzinje (Civil Service),Micium Mhone, Gilbert Chirwa, Schumacher Kuwali, Brighton Munthali (Blue Eagles)
North: Loyd Njaliwa (Moyale Barracks)
Source: Football Association of Malawi