…Nomads to receive K1m for finishing top…
…Silver ends first round unbeaten…
For the first time in years, Be Forward Wanderers have finished the first round of the Super League on pole position following a goalless draw against second placed Silver Strikers at Bingu National Stadium on Sunday afternoon to take their tally to 35 points.
Huge crowd turned out at the facility in the Capital City, and the two sides challenging at the high end of the log table showed a lot of passion, but gave very little away at the back.
Both teams used a 4-4-2 formation, with the Nomads missing the services of Jabulani Linje and Stanley Sanudi who are with the national team, Yamikani Chester and Lucky Malata who are injured and Alfred Manyozo Jnr who is serving his four match ban while the Bankers were without the influential duo of Victor Limbani and Duncan Nyoni due to injuries.
The game started at a high tempo with both teams showing early intent, going forward with pace, but both sets of defenses holding their own.
Joseph Kamwendo and Ernest Tambe showed composure in dictating Nomads’ midfield while Young Chimodzi Jnr and debutant Hadji Wali controlled the midfield for the Central Bankers.
It was Binwel Katinji who missed Silver’s closest chance when he was set through by Thuso Paipi only to drive his effort away from Nomads’ goal area.
Moments later, a brilliant exchange of passes between Katinji, Paipi and Chimodzi Jnr released Blessings Tembo who, instead of slotting the ball past Richard Chipuwa in goals for the hosts, fired his effort wide.
Silver Strikers had to make a first half substitution when Wali was taken off for Timothy Chitedze.
Moments after coming in, the former Azam Tigers and Wanderers midfielder missed a seater when he was found unmarked in the box by Katinji.
At the other end, Isaac Kaliyati raced through Silver defence to release Chande from the right but the former Nyasa Big Bullets forward failed to utilize the chance as he blasted his effort away from the enemy’s territory.
After the recess, the Nomads were a better side as they won their first set peace just after 25 seconds.
Kaliyati, Chande and Peter Wadabwa had their moment of brilliance when the trio exchanged passes but they failed to unlock Silver’s defence which was being led by Trevor Kalema and Yunusu Sheriff.
The Nomads were coming wave after wave and almost broke the deadlock when Mike Robert made a huge mistake into his box by giving away possession to Kaliyati who wasted no time but to fire at goal only to see his effort well saved by the magnificent Brighton Munthali in goals for the Bankers.
Moments later, Silver launched a stunning counter hurricane attack, with Paipi releasing Katinji before blasting his effort away from Nomads’ goal area.
Green Harawa and Mike Tethe all came in for the Bankers while Felix Zulu and Esau Kanyenda were introduced for the hosts.
Wanderers then had another chance through Chande whose shot was once again saved by Munthali.
With minutes to go on the clock, Munthali was called into action again when Kamwendo released Chande who wasted no time by firing at Silver’ goal only to be denied by the former under 20 goalkeeper and after 90 minutes of entertaining football, goalless it ended.
The result sees Wanderers finishing top of the standings with 35 points, just two points ahead of the Central Bankers who have finished the first round without testing a defeat.
As a result of their performance in the first round, the league leaders will be awarded with K1 million from the sponsors.