Second placed, Silver Strikers Sunday missed out to go top of the TNM Super League when they settled to a barren draw in the second round of league against Blue Eagles at Nankhaka ground in Area 30, Lilongwe.
Silver were trailing leaders Mighty Be Forward Wanderers by two points at the end of the first round and a win could have enabled them to froplip the leaders, they could have reached 36 points with a point a head.
With the draw, the Central Bankers have gone 16 games unbeaten while Blue Eagles have maintained their impressive unbeaten record at home this season.
Eagles has 25 points from 16 games while Silver have 34 points from 16 games one short of leaders.
The teams started the game on sloppy pace until in the seventh minute when Blue Eagles captain Mecium Mhone had his long range effort saved by Silver goalie, Brighton Munthali.
Five minutes later, Eagles came in for second time of asking when Stuart Mbunge’s goal bound shot hit the side netting after dribbling past Trevor Kalema.
Eagles Midfielder, Vitumbiko Kumwenda wasted a golden chance in the 20th minute when he blasted over the cross bar from six yard box at the mercy of goalie Munthali.
Silver’ s hitman, Mathews Sibale was not at his best when twice failed to make use of nice passes from Timothy Chitedze and Mark Fodya in the box but let the ball skip out for goal kicks.
Eagles were forced to make an early substitution when they pulled out captain Mhone for Tizgobele Kumwenda due to knee injury nine minutes break.
Two teams went to interval with no scores in sight and fans expected to have them in the last half.
Second half saw Silver introducing Duncan Nyoni for Herbert Wayekha who lacked match fitness, a move which saw Silver playing more of attacking football.
Sibale’s header from Chitedze’s cross in the 53rd minute was well tamed by Eagles alert goalminder John Soko.
Sibale came in for the second wave of attack where he released a powerful shot but Soko had to parry it away and there was no Silver player to pounce on it at a hour mark.
Silver kept piling pressure to get the much needed winner but they appeared to be goal shy at times.
Four minutes to time, Kumwenda had his 30 metre rocket caught Munthali unawares and fumbled into touch as Eagles fans were on the toes thinking the ball had gone in.
Due to tight marking and physical play which was associated with this game, considering a number of stoppages due to injuries the officiating personnel added eight minutes which produced no goals.
Blue Eagles Mentor, Audlow Makonyola thanked his charges for playing well taking into account that they were on a break.
He admitted that, ” his teams performance was disturbed due to force substitution they made after Mhone got injured and our game changed completely.”
Silver’s Team Manager, Francis Songo said it was a good game and both teams created a lot of chances but failed to utilise.
” This type of games are very difficult to play and the is much pressure to contain and this is why you saw the physicality of the match. Every body was keen to collect maximum points,” he observed.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :