WAS it a bit of luck that from the plethora of attackers that Be Forward Wanderers have, it was defender Lucky Malata who sent them to the semi-final of the Airtel Top Eight Cup at the expense of Azam Tigers?
The 1-1 result means Wanderers are still on course to live up to their reputation of winning almost every cup in its inaugural year. Nomads have progressed on a 3-1 aggregate score having won the first leg 2-0 at Balaka Stadium last week.
Malata put Wanderers in the lead after heading home a Joseph Kamwendo corner kick in the eighth minute at Kalulu Stadium. Tigers goalie William Thole had no time to react as the towering defender nodded in the opener.
Luka China wasted Tigers’ best chance in this half after he beat Wanderers’ goalkeeper Richard Chipuwa but his effort went wide. Wanderers substituted Jafalie Chande for Khumbo Ng’ambi, Yamikani Chester for Mike Kaziputa and Alfred Manyozo jnr for Rafiq Mussa whereas Tigers introduced Innocent Msowoya for Precious Phiri and Willy Saenda for China.
Tigers’ Peter Katsonga scored a stunner that caught Wanderers’ defence and goalkeeper Richard Chipuwa flat-footed in the 77th minute. Wanderers Coach Yasin Osman said it was a difficult match and they were looking forward to the semi-finals.
“Our approach was okay after the first leg but the moment we scored we did not finish off our counterparts and we gave them room to come back into the game,” he said. Tigers Technical Director Robin Alufandika said they missed it in the first leg. “Anyway we will look forward to other cups,” he said.
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