After a successful three-year Mo626 College Basketball sponsorship, National Bank of Malawi (NBM) plc can now afford a smile as the sponsorship bears fruits by contributing 11 players into the Malawi National Basketball team.
Basketball Association of Malawi (Basmal) released a 20-member squad to travel to Zimbabwe for FIBA Zone Vi AfroCAN qualifiers between February 20 to 28, 2023.
The eleven are forwards Brian Nyirenda, Manelo Munthali , Francis Mpakeni, Mike Kalanga, Harris Mbenjere, and Steve Mpare.
Playmaker Hydin Mafuta, Ian Limbe, Bernard Kawanga and Patrick Chirwa have been selected as Guards, while Edward Chiwasa is on the list of Centers.
Reacting to the news, NBM plc marketing and corporate affairs manager, Akossa Hiwa expressed excitement at the development emphasizing that unearthing and development of talent within the sport of Basketball remains one of the reasons that the Bank continues to invest in the sport.
Said Hiwa, “As a Bank, we are very pleased to note that our commitment towards Basketball has helped groom great players who will represent our country through the Malawi National Basketball Team. We have renewed our commitment to Mo626 Basketball and anticipate that more talent will be developed in the upcoming seasons.”
“As a Bank of the Nation, we will continue to help drive the country’s growth through our initiatives across multiple sectors. We wish our National Basketball team well as they travel to Zimbabwe.”
Basmal vice president, Banthari Banda conceded that Mo626 College Basketball has offered the coaches a basket of options to tap talent from.
“We are delighted because the level of the competition has greatly improved amongst the players because of the Mo626 College Basketball. That is why you have seen that it has contributed more players into the national team apart from the regional leagues we are running. We still have 55 percent of the players we started with in colleges and we anticipate more of such talent unearthed,” he said.
Meanwhile Banda has asked for more support from the corporate world to cater for the national team’s trip.
The team will be led by coaches Griffin Kalua and Justin Luwemba.
A month ago, NBM plc hiked the tournament’s sponsorship to K450 million for another three years.