Flames held by Mambas

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Flames hopes of finishing the COSAFA Cup group stages with a 100 percent record were dealt a blow when they conceded in the 90th minute to draw 1 all with Mozambique last Thursday afternoon.

The Meke Mwase side have finished top of group B with seven points and face Zambia in the quarter finals on Sunday.

Having secured qualification on Tuesday after beating Namibia, Mwase made nine changes to his starting eleven giving goalkeeper Brighton Munthali, defenders Gomezgani Chirwa and Dennis Chembezi, midfielder Chikoti Chirwa and striker Hassan Kajoke their first run at the tournament.

Malawi took the lead in the 32nd minute after a goalkeeping error from Victor between the sticks for Mozambique when he dropped the ball after what looked like a routine catch.

Kajoke reacted quickest to the loose ball and scored from barely a meter out to net a sixth goal of the competition for The Flames on his debut.

Mozambique should have equalized when Witi’s trickery on the right flank produced a delicious cross that was headed wide by Nilton when it seemed easier to score.

There were chances at either end, but in the case of Malawi too often the final ball failed to find a Flames player.

The Flames looked set to keep up their winning run before the Mambas equalized right at the death when defender Jeitoso ghosted into the box from a corner kick and provided an excellent leap to head into the back of the net.

Mwase said after the match that he was impressed with the performance of the new players.

“It is so unfortunate that we conceded when it looked like we had killed the game. Mozambique attacked us a lot towards the end of the match and we failed to contain the pressure.

“Nonetheless the boys did well and I am happy that I have seen everyone play and we look good to face Zambia on Sunday,” he said.

Namibia finished second in the pool after a comprehensive 3-0 victory over Seychelles.

Mozambique are third with two points, and Seychelles end with one.

Flames line up is as follows: Brighton Munthali, Precious Sambani, Dennis Chembezi, Peter Cholopi, Gomezgani Chirwa( Stanley Sanudi 23′); Mike Mkwate (John Banda 68′), Chikoti Chirwa, Gerard Phiri ( Captain); Peter Banda( Gabadinho  Mhango74′), Has Risan  Kajoke, Chawanangwa Kaonga.

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