Silver Strikers first half substitute Kondwani Mwaila’s 96th minute strike painfully hit determined Civil Sporting hard to a 2-1 suffering Sunday in the TNM Super League Lilongwe derby at Civo Stadium.
The derby lived up to the billing and saw the bankers returning to the top of the table after claiming a sounding victory at the dot of full time from a resultant free kick ably delivered by Mwaila.
Silver have gone 14 games unbeaten and have dislodged Mighty Be Forward Wanderers at the summit with 32 points, a point ahead but the later has a game in hand.
The bankers have played 14 games without a defeat while Civil with the lose have been rooted on fourth place with 22 points from 15 games and have finished the first round.
Credit should be given to Civil Sporting for commanding play in both halves but they were denied by top form goal keeping of Silver’s Brighton Munthali on a cloudy day.
The opening 15 minutes Civil had two scoring chances through Raphael Phiri but he shot wide and his goal bound shot was cleared on the line by Silver’s central defender Herbert Wayekha.
Silver’s centre forward, Mathews Sibale grabbed an opener in the 28th minute when he outpaced Civil Lawrence Chaziya and Gomezgani Chirwa before eluding Tione Tembo in goals.
Three minutes into added time Silver introduced Mwaila for injured Duncan Nyoni.
Silver were on top during break but Civil looked more promising and hungry for a goal.
Civil’s Phiri came close to cancel the lead but his effort went begging just two minutes into the last half.
Silver’s Binwell Katinji could have stretched the lead when he headed over the bar Trevor Katema’s cross from close range in the 57th minute.
Silver made a double substitution in the 75th minute they brought in Ronald Pangani and Michael Tetteh for Katinji and Thuso Paipi to stablize their midfield which looked tired.
Barely two minutes after the substitution Silver’s defender Wayekha handled the ball in the box and referee Patrick Ngoleka awarded a penalty to Civil.
The resultant spot kick was brilliantly excuted by Civil’s captain Joseph Kachule to make it 1-1.
The second was characterised by hard tackling and this saw so many stoppages and time wasting mainly by Silver players.
The prompted the official to signal five more added minutes after regulation time.
The killer came in the 96th minute when Silver was awarded a free kick 20 metres from the goal line which was beautifully curved by Mwaila beating Tembo on near post to claim second and winning goal for the bankers.
“This is the most painful defeat Civil have suffered this season. They dominated play and created a lot of scoring chance but Silver have just snatched a win,” former Civil Sporting defender Willie Chambwinja pointed out.
He said it was pleasing to note that Civil played a very purposeful game but only they were denied by good goal keeping of Munthali.
A Silver supporter, Maxwell Kachimanga said Munthali deserves man of the match award for this derby.
He added “the goalkeeper has saved us from the jaws of the crocodile and they could have easily beaten us today.”
Civil players were seen shading tears at the end of the derby as they were heading to the dressing in disbelief that they have gave away the game at the nick of time.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :