By Bernard Mhone:
Northern Region Football Association (NRFA) is set to conclude the second edition of the K8.3 million Nyasa Capital Finance Cup at Mzuzu Stadium Saturday.
The teams to fight for ultimate glory are TNM Super League returnees Chitipa United and newcomers Mayamiko Stars.
Curtain-raising the final contest will be a third place encounter between Kadona Stars and Embangweni United.
NRFA General Secretary Masiya Nyasulu said they expect stiff competition in the final.
“We had competitive semifinal matches and we expect the final to be more exciting. This time, the champions will pocket K1.5 million [an increase from last year’s K1.2 million] with a trophy and medals while K700,000 will go to runners-up who will also get medals.
“The team to win the third place match will pocket K350,000, with the loser getting K200,000. We know all the four teams are hungry for the cash and that they will not give up without a good fight,” Nyasulu said.
Meanwhile, Mayamiko owner MacDonald Tembo has given K200,000 to his players ahead of the final.
“This is our first time to be in a cup final and our players need to be motivated. We have a new team with players who want to make names for themselves. As for me, this cup will be a Christmas gift. We have done our homework and we are ready for the league champions,” Tembo said.
Chitipa Coach Gift Mkamanga described Mayamiko as a tough side that needs to be handled with care.
“Our target is to win all competitions we take part in. We won the league championship and we badly need this cup. Winning a double will be a morale booster as we prepare to return to the Super League. We know very well that Mayamiko will not be a walkover but we will carry the day,” Mkamanga said.
To qualify for the final, Chitipa edged Kadona 1-0 whereas Mayamiko defeated Embangweni 3-2.
Raiply FC won last year’s edition of the cup after defeating Ekwendeni United 3-2 in post-match penalties after a 1-1 stalemate in regulation time.