Nyasa Big Bullets edged Moyale Barracks 1-0 on Sunday to move into second position in the Tnm Super League.
Chiukepo Msowoya’s first half strike was enough for Bullets to demote Silver strikers from second to third place.
Bullets now have 44 points, six below leaders Be Forward Wanderers and two above Silver who play their game in hand on Monday against Azam Tigers.
Sunday’s match was not without controversy as it started 37 minutes late with Moyale refusing to play citing insecurity, following an assault on their team doctor Jacob Phiri.
Phiri was manhandled by alleged Bullets supporters for sprinkling some liquid on the centre circle just after the teams had finished warming up.
It took the intervention of Super league of Malawi (Sulom) officials to convince the soldiers to take to the pitch and honour the fixture.
On the pitch it was a game of halves as the home side dominated the first 45 minutes while Moyale took control of the second.
Bullets were nearly one up inside the first 4 minutes but Victor Mwale cleared Emmanuel Zoya’s header from the goal line with goalkeeper Simeon Harawa beaten.
A few minutes later Bullets went knocking again.
Menacing Fisher Kondowe sent a beautiful cross from the right which was headed against the post by youthful winger Ernest Petulo. Msowoya and Nelson Kangunje failed to tap the rebound home.
Reward for BB’s hard work however came on 32 minutes when Msowoya combined power and precision to rifle the ball home, beating Harawa to the near post with a low shot.
It should have been 2-0 moments later but Muhammad Sulumba headed over the bar from another decent Fisher Kondowe delivery.
Moyale were a changed side in the second half which saw them enjoy more possession and control the tempo of the game.
Timothy Nyirenda, a former Bullets midfielder himself, run the show for the Lions of Kaning’ina putting BB on the back foot.
Moyale kept penetrating through Bullets’ right where John Lanjesi endured a torrid time as Chamveka Gwetsani floated some dangerous balls into the Bullets area.
Goalkeeper Rabson Chiyenda however dealt well with the aerial threat.
Despite being forced into a defensive mode, Bullets still created the best chances of the second period.
Kondowe continued to defy age by providing inch perfect crosses from the right to the delight of the sea of red which packed the Chilomoni stadium.
Substitute Jimmy Zakazaka struck the post with a stinging low shot while the woodwork later denied Msowoya who was set up by substitute Mike Mkwate.
Besides Mkwate and Zakazaka who came on for Sulumba and Petulo respectively, Bullets also replaced Kangunje with Henry Kabichi.
Moyale had Deus Mkutu in place of Khuda Muyaba while Gift Nyando made way for Smith Kadawati.
In his post-match interview, BB team manager James Chilapondwa hailed his troops for winning what he described as a tough match.
“It was a tough one, very physical as it is always the case with army teams, but kudos to the boys for the victory. We are not thinking much about the title race, we will just concentrate on one game at a time,” said Chilapondwa.
Moyale coach Nicholas Mhango praised his boys despite the loss.
“I am proud of the performance though we went down. There was a tense atmosphere at the start of the match but the boys kept their focus and fought a good fight,” said Mhango.
As Bullets sit second on the standings, Moyale are 6th, level on 34 points with Civil Sporting Club and Mafco who command positions 4 and 5 respectively, owing to their superior goal difference.
Moyale play Wanderers next while Bullets will face Premier Bet Wizards.