Lions, Envirom match abandoned: Running battles between ‘ganyu’ fans and soldiers

Running battles between civilians and soldiers at the Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre ended the Carlsberg Cup quarter-final match involving Envirom  FC and Red Lions abruptly in the second half.

There was tension at the stadium with a united front of ‘ganyu’ fans from Big Bullets and Mighty Wanderers camps to rally behind the Ndirande township based out-fit against the Zomba-based soliders.

From the kick-off of the match, the ganyu supporters who out-numbered Red Lions fans, gave Enviom vociferous supppirt.

Beaming with confidence, Envirom dorminated the whole 20 minutes of the match especially on the middle of the park where Issac Maluwa and Alick Mmadi outplayed Kelvin Katema on the opposite side.

Teams onto the field of battle, game abandoned while they were equal 1-1.....Photo Jeromy Kadewere

Teams onto the field of battle, game abandoned while they were equal 1-1…..Photo Jeromy Kadewere

The first scare for the Lions came in the 23rd minute when Chikondi Mpulula’s cleverly shot was saved by the cross bar with Bright Ngwenyama already beaten in goals.

Sensing danger, the Lion roared in the 25th minute when Mbetewa Junior exchanged brilliant passes with Lito Chawinga only to be frustrated by Blessings Kameza in goals.

The Lions were now in control of the game as they were coming wave after wave but their striking force lacked confidence in the danger zone and they kept shooting off target.

However, after withstanding  a lot of pressure, towards the end of the first half,  Envirom nearly scored in the 43rd minute when Chikondi Mpulula managed to beat two defenders with Ngwenyama to beat. He resorted in shooting wide.

Come second half, it was Red Lions who started the game on a high note pressurizing the home side but   couldn’t find the target.

In the 57th minute, the mercenary supporters suffered their first embarrassment when Loti Chawinga headed in a well taken corner kick leaving the whole stadium dead silent.

The Lions roared for a few minutes as Zikhone Nguluwe equalized for Envirom sending ganyu supporters on cloud nine.

When Lions scored a section of their fans who occupied one of the Big Bullets stand were involved in chaos with some ganyu fans who sat closer to them.

While the game was still in the process, some ganyu supporters from the open stands started throwing missiles towards the Red Lions supporters who were tussling with other civilians.

The Red Lions supporters were dispersed with missiles before they trekked towards Mighty Wanderers ganyu supporters, who were also hostile.

Sensing more danger, the chief steward officer Pascal Nkuta went to plead with the soldiers to leave the open stands for the covered stands giving them a lee-way through  the gate leading the pitch.

However, on their way to the covered stands, some soldiers were involved in brawl  with civilians as stones were also used in process.

The civilians also ganged up against soldiers  who  grabbed one man and tortured him.

The whole saga was happening in the absence of the police.

The game was forced to be abandoned when some ganyu supporters invaded the pitch baying for Red Lions supporter’s blood.

The fans, who were chanting, “ Talira kwambiri ndimasoja” chased  the players to the dressing rooms before smashing Red Lions bus wind screen.

When there was calm, Envirom players came back onto the field of play as Red Lions players remained in the dressing room.

The home team demanded for the game to continue as the Soldiers opted for the game to be abandoned.

After waiting for a period of 10 minutes the referee was forced to blow the final whistle to mark the end of the game.

In action.....Photo Jeromy Kadewere

In action…..Photo Jeromy Kadewere

One minute of silence in honour of the three Mafco players  who died on a road accident.....Photo Jeromy Kadewere

One minute of silence in honour of the three Mafco players who died on a road accident…..Photo Jeromy Kadewere

Flames coach Saintfeit shaking  hands with Harold Zulu....Photo Jeromy Kadewere

Flames coach Saintfeit shaking hands with Harold Zulu….Photo Jeromy Kadewere

Red Lions players ready to face the home team

Red Lions players ready to face the home team

Envirom players ready for the battle.....Photo Jeromy Kadewere

Envirom players ready for the battle…..Photo Jeromy Kadewere

In the name of fair play before the kick-off....Photo Jeromy Kadewere

In the name of fair play before the kick-off….Photo Jeromy Kadewere

Who can rescue this ball boy with a new short.....Photo Jeromy Kadewere

Who can rescue this ball boy with a new short…..Photo Jeromy Kadewere

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