Traditional rivals, Big Bullets and Be Forward Wanderers have avoided each other in the Standard Bank Knock-Out Cup.
The draw was conducted at the bank’s headquarters in Lilongwe on Wednesday night. The two Blantyre giants were drawn in separate routes and can only meet in the final.
Wanderers, Kamuzu Barracks (KB), Dedza Young Soccer Stars and Mafco made it into the preliminary round through a vote.
Surprisingly, last year’s finalists Azam Tigers, will not be part of the competition this year. A total of 2,700 votes were cast with Wanderers receiving the most votes followed by Mafco, KB and Dedza.
The Nomads were drawn against Mafco in the preliminary round, whereas KB date Dedza Young Soccer on the weekend of September 13 at a venue to be decided by the organising committee.
In the quarter-finals, the winners between Mafco and Wanderers face Red Lions. The winners between KB and Dedza will play Civo United.
In what promises to be a thrilling quarter-final, Moyale host Bullets. Another mouth-watering quarterfinal will be between Lilongwe giants, The quarterfinals will be played on September 27, with the semifinals and final slated for October 17 and 31 respectively.
All teams represented during the draw and described it as fair. Speaking during the draw, Standard Bank Head of Information Technology, William Nuka, warned against violence and hooliganism.
“As Standard Bank, we don’t want to be associated with violence and hooliganism. We are calling upon all football fans not to misbehave, but were ready to continue supporting football in the country,” he said.
In his remarks, chairperson of the organising committee, Jabbar Alide shared similar sentiments, saying there is no room for violence this season.
This year’s cup is being sponsored to the tune of K46 million and the winners will pocket K10 million.