…as Tigers maul Blue Eagles, KB held…
Nyasa Big Bullets moved to the summit of the TNM Super League table following their convincing 3-0 victory over Red Lions at Mulanje Park Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Rodgers Yasin made a single change to the squad that hammered Azam Tigers last week, with Ernest Kakhobwe replacing Rabson Chiyenda in goals for the People’s Team.
Bullets meant business from the word go, playing very attacking football which saw them winning a corner inside the first 4 minutes.
Fischer Kondowe was at it again, delivering a masterclass corner which found Sankhani Mkandawire to head past defenceless Clement Mlomba in goals for the Soldiers, 1-0.
The hosts were dealt with a massive blow when Patrick Phiri was stretchered off following a harsh tackle from Chimwemwe Chidati and was replaced by Mike Mkwate.
Moments later, Mlomba was called into action again when he produced a fantastic save to deny Chiukepo Msowoya from finding the back of the net.
At the other end, Willard John, Royal Bokosi and Moses Nankumba restored their midfield and created their first chance but Bokosi’s shot went straight at Kakhobwe.
Just when the Soldiers were slowly coming back into the game, the 13-time Super League champions added their second goal through Bright Munthali who scored from the rebound after Msowoya’s shot was saved by Mlomba, 2-0.
With less than 15 minutes to play before the recess, Bokosi should have reduced the arrears but his volley from outside the penalty box came off the woodwork to frustrate head coach Stereo Gondwe.
In the second half, Red Lions were the better side than the hosts and they almost got a goal when Bonface Kaulesi’s low drive managed to beat Kakhobwe before hitting the woodwork in unbelievable circumstances.
The Soldiers introduced Innocent Mulima for John as they tried to add firepower in their quest to reduce the deficit.
The visitors looked to catch Bullets on the counter-attack.
This strategy almost paid dividends when Mathews Simbeyi did well to beat Mkandawire and John Lanjesi before playing Bokosi through on goal, but the forward placed his effort into the hands of Kakhobwe.
The visitors then made a double substitution, introducing Loti Chawinga and Kumbukani Mwambene for Kaulesi and Ernest Mkasaleka, with Bullets bringing in Chimango Kayira for Nelson Kangunje.
Mlomba did well to keep out Munthali’s attempt with a powerful drive in the 73rd minute as Bullets piled the pressure on the visitors.
With less than 12 minutes to play, Bullets sealed the victory through Henry Kabichi.
Msowoya’s shot from the close range was well saved by Mlomba only to see the ball landing straight at Kabichi who headed home in an empty net, 3-0.
The goal took the sting out of Lions’ attack, and Bullets saw the remainder of the encounter out with relative ease as they recorded a 3-0 victory to go top of the standings by opening up a one point gap over Silver Strikers who will be in action on Sunday against Blue Eagles at Silver Stadium.
In other results, a brace from Peter Katsonga and a strike from Chikaiko Batson saw Azam Tigers mauling Eagles 3-0 to move up to 4th in the standings with 20 points from 14 games.
The Kau Kau boys were coming from a disappointing 3-0 defeat to Bullets last week but made no mistake as they put the Area 30 based side to the sword. They face Masters Security on Sunday at Dedza Stadium in their final game of the first round.
Eagles’ defeat saw them dropping into the 8th position with 17 points from 11 games and they will play Silver Strikers on Sunday away from home.
At Kasungu Stadium, Stain Dave was on score sheet again as he inspired TN Stars to a hard fought 1-0 victory over Dwangwa United to move up to 7th on the log table with 18 points from 14 games.
The latest defeat drops Dwangwa United into the 13th position with 13 points from 14 games.
At Civo Stadium, Kamuzu Barracks and Nchalo United played out a 1-all draw. Curthbert Sinetre gave the visitors a first half lead but Sammy Chiponda ensured that his side got something from the match when he leveled the scores with less than 8 minutes to play before the final whistle.
The action continues on Sunday with exciting fixtures as the Bankers will be looking forward to regain their top position when they host Eagles at Silver Stadium while Mzuni FC will play host to Be Forward Wanderers at Mzuzu Stadium.
At Dedza Stadium, Masters Security will welcome Tigers, with Civil Sporting Club hosting financially troubled Nchalo United at Civo Stadium.