Gangling forward Harvey Nkacha proved why he merits Flames consideration with a fabulous strike for Kamuzu Barracks (KB) that sent Big Bullets packing out of the Carlsberg Cup on Wednesday at Dedza Stadium.
The lanky forward swung up field to plant the lone goal in the 15th minute to send KB’s spectators into delirium.
And it did call for a Carlsberg as enthusiastic KB and ganyu fans broke into spontaneous celebrations.
Nkacha headed home Kelvin Malikebu’s well-curled corner-kick that gave Bullets goaltender Owen Chaima not a prayer.
However, Bullets coach Eddington Ng’onamo and general secretary Higger Mkandawire blamed officiation for their team’s exit.
Said Ng’onamo: “I am not happy with officiation. They denied us a clear goal.
“The referee [Dennis Ngulube] is also from the army and no wonder he threw his weight behind them. He frustrated all our moves.”
But his KB counterpart Billy Phambala said his side was too good for Bullets.
“We are looking beyond quarter-finals. We are a better team than Bullets; they are just thriving on a name,” said Phambala.
KB will face winners between Blantyre United and Mponela who meet this afternoon.
At Chitowe Stadium in Dwangwa, Mzuzu-based Moyale Barracks ousted fellow soldiers Mafco of Salima 3-1 in a penalty shout-out. The match ended a 1-1 in regulation time.
Moyale were reportedly simply better and fresher. They shot ahead through Gastin Simkonda only for the stubborn Stereo Gondwe men to reply and drag the game into the penalty shootouts.
“Fatigue caught up with us as we travelled from Blantyre to Salima and did not train before proceeding to Chitowe. We accept defeat,” Gondwe said.
Before the penalties, all eyes were on Mafco’s custodian Frank Kasiyano who saved three straight spot-kicks in the 3-2 post-match penalty defeat of Azam Tigers on Sunday at Kamuzu Stadium.
But the afternoon belonged to Moyale goalkeeper McDonald Harawa who matched Kasiyano’s feat when he stopped three consecutive spot-kicks taken by Sadani Magwele, Chifundo Phimba and Gift Soko.
Moyale converted through Crispin Fukizi, Deus Nkutu and Gastin Simkonda.
Mafco scored once.