Flames beat Chipolopolo
Ex-Orlando Pirates midfielder Joseph Kamwendo was hero of the day again as his lone strike earned the Flames of Malawi a sweet 1-0 win over Africa kings, Zambia, in an Independence Anniversary Celebrations match at Kamuzu Stadium on Friday.
Kamwendo, who is enjoying a rich vein of form weighing in with impressive displays, made it two in back-to-back Flames’ games when he toe-poked the ball into the net from the near post after Zambia half- cleared the ball following a John Banda right-flank low cross in the 79th minute.
It was a game of two halves with different fortunes with the Zambians putting Malawi, watched by First Gentleman Retired Chief Justice Richard Banda, on the back foot for the entire opening half.
It was the performance that silenced the packed crowd that had the privilege of watching the game for free.
Midfielder Joseph Sitoli terrorized Malawi midfield but striker Evance Kangwa failed to utilize his chances. On one occasion, Kangwa had, as he was about to pull the trigger, the ball snatched on his foot by the hosts’ goalkeeper Charles Swini.
With coach Kinnah Phiri pulling out defender Bongani Kaipa for teenage sensation Gabadini Mhango to partner Benard Harawa upfront after break, the Flames were on fire putting the visitors on the back foot.
Zambia goalkeeper Joshua Titima twice denied John Banda and his elder brother Frank from close range.
Zambia, who featured three players from their senior team against four for the hosts, finally got punished by Kamwendo’s opportunistic strike to ignite celebrations on the day when Malawi turned 48 since gaining independence.
It was Kamwendo’s second goal for Flames having also scored a fortnight ago in 2-0 win over Chad in a Nations Cup qualifier. At club level for Wanderers, he has two goals in six matches.