Malawi 2 (Mhango 44’ 58’)
Zimbabwe 1 (Wadi 39’)
Malawi National Football Team, the Flames put up a vintage performance to subdue Zimbabwe’s Warriors 2-1 in a crunch Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) Group B tie to revive their chances of making it to the knockout stage.
After losing their captain Limbikani Mzava, who was replaced by Lawrence Chaziya, the Flames had to come from behind to grab the crucial three points after man of the March Orlando Pirates’ Gabadinho Mhango’s brace.
A slow start from the Flames saw the Warriors taking the lead in the 39th minute when the defence failed to clear a cross from the left.
Goalkeeper Ernest Kakhobwe left his line a bit earlier after his disorganised defence failed to deal with a cross from Onismor Bhasera, gifting Ishmael Wadi a free header.
But the Flames reorganised themselves and immidiately equalised five minutes later from Frank Gabadihno Mhango’s superb strike after tapping in from Francisco Madinga’s cross behind Warriors’ defence.
Magnet winger Madinga almost added another one after escaping his two markers, and pouncing on through ball but his shot from a tight angle zoomed against the cross bar.
Malawi kept on pressing as the match went into recess tied at one-all.
Just after recess Gaba completed a brace after a blunder from Teenage Hadebe, robbing the defender the ball from the Warriors defender before tapping past keeper Petros Mhari.
Midfielders Banda and Yamikani Chester replaced Richard Mbulu and Khuda Muyaba in 65th minute as Malawi went on to apply intelligent game management , keeping Zimbabwe’s wounded Warriors at bay.
Gerald Phiri Jnr nd Charles Petro came in to replace Chimwemwe Idana and Madinga giving Warriors no room for recovery as Malawi went on to grab vital three points and keep third position ahead of the last Group B match against Senegal.
Malawi XI: D. Chembezi, J. Banda, E. Kakhobwe, K. Muyaba( Peter Banda), R. Mbulu (Yamikani Chester) C. Idana( Charles Petro), S. Sanudi, Mzava( Chaziya) Chirwa, G. Mhango, F. Madinga( Gerald Phiri JNR)
Warriors XI: P. Mhari, T. Chimwemwe, O. Bhasera, T. Hadebe, G. Takwara, K. Madzongwe, K. Musona (c), K. Benyu, I. Wadi, B. Kangwa, T. Kadewere