Malawi National Women’s team, The Scorchers, are through to the Semifinals of the 2021 COSAFA Women’s Championship semifinals after finishing as the best placed runner up at the on-going tournament in Port Elizabeth.
The Scorchers will face South Africa in the last four for the second year running on Thursday afternoon at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
The team’s qualification follows Zambia’ 1-0 win over Uganda in Group C on Tuesday afternoon, which confirmed Zambia as Group C Winners and ended the latter’s hopes of finishing as Best Runners Up.
The Scorchers finished second in Group A with six points; same with Group B’s Zimbabwe but Malawi have a superior goal difference of +2 against Zimbabwe’s +1.
Malawi kept their fingers crossed waiting for the final Group C match between Zambia and Uganda as the result was to decide Malawi’s fate.
The Scorchers needed Zambia to win or force a draw for them to qualify and a Grace Chanda’s 38-minute strike gave Zambia the maximum points as they finished top with nine points while Uganda finished second with four points.
This means Malawi and Zambia have joined South Africa and Tanzania to complete the Semifinal list with Tanzania hosting Zambia in the first Semifinal match while South Africa and Malawi will meet in the last Semifinal.
This will be a third COSAFA Cup semifinal meeting between Malawi and South Africa. Last year South Africa beat Malawi 6-2 while in 2011 they emerged 5-1 winners.
Reacting on the team’s qualification to semifinals, Coach Kazuwa said his team is excited and will this year do everything possible to make it to the final.
“We came to compete and we are happy that we are through to the semifinals. The girls are ready and geared to make it to the final because we were in a highly contested group.
“The girls fought hard and we only conceded because of avoidable individual mistakes. The girls have now picked up after making and I am sure that the Semifinal match between South Africa and Malawi will be an exciting one,” he said.
Semifinal losers will on Saturday battle it out for a third place with the final match staged later on the same day.