Malawi National Football Team are technically out of the 2018 Cosafa Castle Cup following Wednesday’ 1-1 draw to Botswana.
The Flames needed a win to keep their quarterfinal chances alive but the Zebra’s dying minutes equalizer means Ronny Van Geneudgen’ men are out of the competition.
The Flames started like a house on fire as they used their pace to trouble the Zebra’s defence and opened their scoring just after seven minutes through the young promising left back Precious Sambani.
RVG used the same line up which lost to Mauritius on Monday and this had a very massive negative impact as Gastin Simkonda was reduced to a passenger throughout the match.
Botswana tried to test Brighton Munthali in goals for the host from a distance, but the long range shot sailed wide.
The visitors nearly came close to finding an equalizer just after the half hour mark but Munthali was very alert to deny the Zebras from finding the back of the net.
Rafick Namwera and John Banda were failing to coordinate, forcing the two midfielders to play deeply into their own half as Malawi opted to defend their slender lead.
Come second half, Botswana were more offensive than the Flames but lacked firepower in front of goals.
At the other end of the field, Richard Mbulu forced himself into Botswana’s half before releasing a thunderbolt which missed the goal mouth with an inch.
RVG brought in Alfred Manyozo Jnr for the ineffective Dalitso Sailesi while Chiukepo Msowoya came in for Sinkonda.
The change brought an imminent impact as Malawi pressed harder in search of more goals but the Zebras defence was too stubborn to unlock.
With less than three minutes to play, Malawi’s disease of conceding in the late stages of matches came back to haunt them as Botswana levelled the scoreline I’m the 87th minute.
Defender John Lanjesi was caught napping in the line of defense, failing to stop Botswana’s forward before firing past helpless Munthali to completely dash Malawi’s hopes of making it into the last eight of the competition.
The result sees Malawi occupying 4th position with a point from two games while Botswana have maintained their top position with four points from the same number of games.