Malawi national football team, ‘The Flames’ dream of winning the HollywoodBets Cosafa Cup came to on end on Friday following their 3-nil loss to Lesotho on post-match penalties after the game ended 1-all in regulation time.
Flames failed to take advantage of their numerical superiority at King Zwelithin Stadium as they failed to beat the very organized Lesotho side.
Lesotho took the lead in the 17th minute but Flames equalized just six minutes later through Chawanangwa Kaonga who scored from the spot after a had ball incident in the box.
Lesotho played the last 45 minutes with 10 men after one of their defenders was sent off following a foul on Chawanangwa Kaonga.
Kaonga had a chance to double Flames’ lead 11 minutes in the second half after he received a pass from Lanjesi Nkhoma but the Zanaco FC player shot wide in an unbelievable circumstances.
The match ended 1-all in 93 minutes and went straight into penalties where Chimwemwe Idana, Stanley Sanudi and Patrick Macheso had all their shots saved by the Lesotho goalkeeper Sekhwane Moerane who also scored the winning penalty for his team.
In a post match interview, Flames Coach Patrick Mabedi bemoaned missed opportunities by his side but praised his charges for a good performance at the tournament.
“I have to give credit to my players. They did their best and we struggled to penetrate Lesotho defence as they dug deep. We had opportunities too but we missed them. We were not composed enough. Sometimes you need to be patient and not be rushing. But all in all we did all we could. It just wasn’t our day,” said Mabedi.
Despite the loss, Flames midfielder Chimwemwe Idana was named player of the match.
The win has taken Lesotho to their first Cosafa Cup final after 23 years and they will face the winner between South Africa and Zambia in the Final which will be played on Sunday.
Reported by Alex Splendor Ngulube