Malawi National Senior Football Team on Sunday painfully bowed out of the Cosafa Cup after going down 4-2 to neighbor Zambia through post match penalties in an exciting match played at the Prince Magogo Stadium in Durban, South Africa.
The Flames gave away a two nil lead to salvage a two all draw at the end of regulation time.
Bidvest Wits University forward Frank Gabadinho Mhango gave the Flames the lead in the first half after he enriched a powerful shot to the bottom right corner of Zambia’s net from a Captain John Banda flick on.
First half ended 1-0 in favour of Malawi but Zambia looked more dangerous particularly in the last 15 minutes.
In the second half, Malawi increased their lead in the 49th minute through a beautifully taken Gerald Phiri Junior spot kick after the referee awarded the Flames a penalty.
This followed a foul on striker Richard Mbulu inside the penalty box.
The goal gave Malawi enough time to relax and organized themselves to safeguard their lead but the wounded Zambians never gave up.
They fought hard and pulled one back in the 58th minute.
As everyone though Malawi has made it into the semi final, it was the same old story of conceding in the dying minutes.
Zambia equalized in the 88th minute following a blunder by Malawi goalkeeper Ernest Kakhobwe who completely missed the ball from a Precious Sambani back pass.
The match went straight into penalties.
Gerald Phiri Junior and Stanly Sanudi managed to score their spot kicks while substitute Schumacher Kuwali blasted over the bar and Sambani’s spot kick was denied entry into the net by the cross bar.
It was over for the Flames who had two wins and one draw from the group stages.
Coach Meke Mwase as monitored on Digital Satelite Television (DStv) could not hide his disappointment and pain.
“”This is the other part of the game that pains a lot. We failed to hold on to our lead and conceded a goal in the dying minutes. That costed us the game. We lacked maturity” said Mwase.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :