Wanderers, Bullets still neck-to-neck

 

Be Forward Wanderers are slowly getting closer to the promised land, but their age-old rivals—Nyasa Big Bullets—continue to breathe down the Nomads’ neck.

The Nomads yesterday came from a goal down to beat a stubborn Dwangwa United 3-2 at Balaka Stadium while Bullets also had to sweat for their 2-1 victory over Malawi Defence Force (MDF)-sponsored side Mafco FC at Chitowe Stadium in Dwangwa, Nkhotakota.

Nomads celebrate their win

Only a point separates the two giants with the Nomads still at the summit of the 16-team log table with 62 points from 27 matches while the People’s Team is second with 61 points from 28 matches.

Nomads’ coach Yasin Osman yesterday said while his team is not yet in the comfort zone, he believes the pressure is on their rivals.

“We are aware that any slip could prove fatal at this point, but as it is, the pressure is on them [Bullets] because they are playing a catch-up game.

“Unlike them, we are not counting on others because the title is for us to lose,” he said in an interview after yesterday’s match.

The Nomads mentor said they now need to win two games from their remaining three matches, “but it won’t be easy. Nevertheless, we are taking each game as it comes”.

On his part, Bullets assistant coach Eliah Kananji said they will keep on fighting to the very end.

“We will try to win all our remaining games and see where it will take us to, but it is now very tight,” he said.

According to a live commentary monitored on Zodiak Broadcasting Station (ZBS), Dwangwa caught the Nomads off-guard with an early goal through Hassan Upindi in the seventh minute.

However, sensing danger, the Nomads reorganised themselves and pulled level through their ‘sniper’ Jaffalie Chande’s header.

He swung up-field to plant home a cross from Stanley Sanudi. Isaac Kaliati scored the second for the Nomads in the 33rd minute before Joseph Kamwendo added the third three minutes later after being put through by Esau Kanyenda.

But then, against the run of play, Dwangwa scored the second with a fabulous shot from Upindi from about 25 yards.

There were no goals in the second half which was scrappy.

At Chitowe, Bright Munthali drew first blood for Bullets in the early stages before Mafco equalised through Zikani Sichinga.

And just when it appeared the two teams would share the spoils, Fischer Kondowe netted the winner for Bullets through a penalty awarded after Mafco defender Maurice Chiumia was adjudged to have fouled Munthali.

Mafco coach Temwa Msuku had no kind words for the referee, saying:  “Our football is being spoiled by match officials. The referee awarded a dubious penalty just because he had already planned. Otherwise, the worst result for us was supposed to be a draw.. It is a shame to our game.” n

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