They are called “cup specialists” in domestic football but for the first time, Be Forward Wanderers have lost two consecutive cup finals in a row at their preferred Bingu National Stadium.
In July this year, the Nomads lost 8-9 on penalties to Silver Strikers in the inaugural Airtel Top 8 Cup when Harry Nyirenda’s spot kick hit the upright to leave the Lali Lubani boys in total disbelief.
Two months later, the Blue side of the town have lost another cup final in a similar fashion to their fiercest rivals Nyasa Big Bullets.
On Sunday, Wanderers twice gave away a lead before losing the game during the shoot-out when Yamikani Chester’s penalty came off the woodwork to miss out on a whooping K12 million in the process.
Previously, the Nomads were putting much of their efforts in cup competitions but with the recent defeats in cup finals, are they now focusing on Super League glory?
Earlier this season, club General Secretary Mike Butao made it clear that Wanderers were now turning their attention to Super League championship following demands from their sponsors to end their league drought which has now lasted for more than 11 years.
“We are tired with winning cup competitions, we want the league this season and we will do whatever it takes to end our Super League drought because we have also been told by our sponsors to bring the championship home so we are no longer focusing much on cup competitions because we have just had enough of these other competitions,” he told the media some time back.
If we are to go into Butao’ remarks, then the Nomads are indeed focusing on league glory. For the first time in 11 years, Be Forward Wanderers managed to finish on top of the standings in the first round though the gap with the top three is just seven points.
With the pressure now mounting, the question remains whether the Nomads will maintain their top form in the league as the second round has just kicked off.
Winning the two finals would have seen Wanderers collecting K27 million in total, that’s almost two times the money which is given to Super League champions.