Malawi National Football Team, the Flames and Mozambique Mambas have settled for one-all draw in the TotalEnergies Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) second round first leg at Bingu National Stadium in Lilongwe.
The visitors scored first through Nerson Divrassone in the eighth minute after connecting a cross from his captain Stelio Ernesto dribble.
But Malawi, who missed plenty of chances in the encounter, levelled the scores through midfielder Yamikani Chester, whose shot zoomed past Mozambique keeper Ernan Albeto Siluane in the 21st minute.
Malawi coach Mario Marinica XI saw the return of first choice goalkeeper Charles Thom with captain of the day right back Stanley Sanudi, centre backs Paul Ndlovu and Miracle Gabeya while Gomezgani Chirwa operated down the left back position.
Chikoti Chirwa played as defending midfielder just behind Chimwemwe Idana with Micium Mhone as right winger while Yamikani Chester played as a free role though mainly on the left wing.
Stain Davie and Muhammad Sulumba for the first time played as twin strikers upfront.
Malawi started strongly making use of speedy Chester’s attacks, but it was the visitors that were more precise in execution of their plan.
Mambas captain Stelio Ernesto got the better of right back Sanudi before getting rid of Ndholvu and delivered a precise cross which left advancing forward Divrassone to lunge into the coming ball beating Thom in goals.
But the Flames responded positively and attacking midfielder Chimwemwe Idana launched an attack which resulted in Mhone sending Chester on the loose.
The Wanderers playmaker saw the Mambas goalkeeper anticipating for a cross and did what he never expected, shooting at goal and the ball zoomed on his side to level the scores.
The second half saw Malawi continuing where they stopped but the hosts were denied by poor finishing.
Substitute Gaddie Chirwa, who came in for team mate at Blue Eagles Mhone, should have put Malawi in the lead in the 47th minute after being played in by Chester, in the six-yard box.
Davie also had his share of near misses when in the 53rd minute his shot was deflected with goalkeeper Siluane beaten.
The Silver Strikers forward also shot straight to the keeper instead of aiming for far post.
The Flames were dealt a blow when injuries meant Davie had to be replaced by Chiukepo Msowoya while Chester had to be replaced by Lanjesi Nkhoma.
For Mozambique, coach Chiquinho Conde, the draw was good result as he goes back home with an away goal while Marinica said they will go flat out in the return leg set for September 14 in Maputo.
Charles Thom (GK), Stanley Sanudi (C) , Paul Ndhlovu, Miracle Gabeya, Gomezgani Chirwa, Chikoti Chirwa, Micium Mhone (Gaddie Chirwa), Chimwemwe Idana, Stenie Davie (Chiukepo Msowoya), Yamikani Chester (Lanjesi Nkhoma) and Muhammad Sulumba
Ernan Alberto Siluane (GK), Ifren Matola, Danilo Muze, Amade Momade, Nelson Divrassone, Martinho Alberto Thauzene, Francisco Lopes Albino Muchanga, Stelio Ernesto (C), Dario Chongai Estevao Melo, Pachoio Lau Ha King and Shaquille Momad Da Conceicao Nangy