Silver Strikers on Saturday ended a five-year wait for an away victory over resilient Mighty Wakawaka Tigers after snatching a narrow 1-0 victory in TNM Super League at Mpira Stadium in Chiwembe, Blantyre.
Midfielder Duncan Nyoni scored in the 31st minute to ensure the Bankers collect maximum points.
Previous encounters, including last season’s fixture at the same venue ended in victory for Tigers and the loss played a big role in Silver’s failure to win the league title.
However, this time Silver assistant coach McDonald Yobe came with a different approach as he opted to press rather than give the hosts respect to play their attacking game.
Although using fringe players, the coach employed an open play in the first-half and his tactics were well executed by Levison Maganizo, Mike Roberts, Chikondi Kamanga and goal scorer Nyoni.
The Bankers missed plenty of scoring opportunities, but it was the former Simba FC player who managed to get it right, heading in from a rebound after Tigers goalkeeper Dalitso Khungwa stopped the initial effort.
In the second-half, the Bankers decided to sit back a little bit after losing injured play-maker Nyoni who was replaced by Chawanangwa Kaonga.
The Bankers only went forward when necessary after catching the hosts on the break.
The approach worked as the Bankers managed to contain marauding Tigers who relentlessly searched for an equaliser.
Tigers’ Jaffali Maunde, Iven Mwakapenda, Dalitso Sailesi, Mphatso Kasonga and Precious Chiudza did all they could to ensure they at least salvage a point from the match.
But it was not just the Kaukau Boys’ day as Chiunda saw his effort cleared off the line by Roberts in what could be Tigers closest chance of day.
Yobe said he was happy to have ended their away jinx against Tigers.
He said: “Congratulations to the boys. We have managed to beat Tigers at home after almost five years. We managed to score the goal and defended it.”
The loss to Silver was the third consecutive for Tigers, having lost and also failed to score and against Sable Farming and Nyasa Big Bullets.
Tigers coach Trevor Kajawa said poor finishing betrayed them.
“We were blunt upfront. That is our biggest problem. We are not playing badly. The only challenge is scoring. But all the same, we are building a new team.”
Tigers have finished the first round with 15 points.
Meanwhile, second-placed Blue Eagle were held to a 1-1 by Ekwendeni Hammers.
At Chitowe in Dwangwa, Nkhotakota, third-placed Mighty Wanderers also dropped points after a 1-1 draw against Mafco. Red Lions beat Moyale Barracks 2-1 in Mzuzu.