11 September 2017 11:05
Record 13-time league champions, Nyasa Big Bullets, lifted their third Malawian FA Cup (Carlsberg Cup) after beating rivals, Be Forward Wanderers, 5-3 on penalties on Saturday, 9 September 2017 in Lilongwe.
Bullets came from behind twice to defeat holders Wanderers on penalties after a 2-2 tie in regulation time at the Bingu National Stadium.
Jafali Chande, a former player of Bullets punished his former employers scoring the opener for Wanderers with a simple tap in early in the game. Interestingly, it was another former player of Wanderers, striker Muhamad Sulumba, who leveled matters for Bullets on ten minutes.
In the second half, winger Isaac Kaliyati restored Wanderers lead after some neat exchanges in the penalty box.
Just as Wanderers thought they had a record fourth title in the bag, Nelson Kangunje scored for Bullets from the penalty spot through, and he went on to score the decisive post-match penalty.
There was more irony to the match as Bullets interim Coach Elia Kananji wrote his name in the cup’s history as the only man to have clinched it the most three times with both teams in a row.
Kananji won the cup while at Bullets in 2014 and claimed the cup for two consecutive seasons after crossing the floor to Wanderers. He returned to Bullets last season months after winning the cup with Wanderers.
After Saturday’s game, Wanderers Team Manager, Steve Madeira, blamed his charges for letting Bullets off the hook.
“We could have wrapped up the game in regulation time but we gave it away. It is so disappointing but we have to pick ourselves up and focus on the league,” Madeira said.
His Bullets counterpart, James Chilapondwa, was on cloud nine.
“It could have been such a shame if we have not won it in front of our supporters who rallied behind us all the way. It is now party time. The reality is yet to sink in for us,” Chilapondwa said.