Nyasa Big Bullets, Be Forward Wanderers, Blue Eagles and Silver Strikers won the first legs against Moyale Barracks, Kamuzu Barracks (KB), Mafco FC and Civil Sporting Club, respectively by 1-0 margins.The adage ‘make hey while the sun shines’ summed up the Airtel Top 8 quarter-final second leg matches as all the first leg winners progressed to the semi-finals.
However, the Nomads were the only team to win both legs after edging KB by the same margin to sail through to the semi-finals while the other three return-leg ties, ended in draws.
Both wins for Wanderers were through spot-kicks converted by their veteran midfielder Joseph Kamwendo, who is the leading scorer with two goals.
The second edition has also proved to be tight so far as no team has scored more than a goal in a single match and no team has won by a two-goal margin.
A Nomads fan, Sam Gawani, based in Chimwankhunda Township in Blantyre, said: “This year’s edition has proved to be a tight contest. It is exciting but the lack of goals is taking away some rhythm.”
Mafco’s exit on Saturday virtually ended Malawi Defence Force (MDF)-sponsored teams’ chase for the K15 million Airtel Money. It was a confirmation of a network breakdown at the barracks.
And whether by design or just sheer coincidence, there was no team that produced man-of-the-match in both legs.
Nine goals were scored in the quarter-finals.
Unlike last year when Bullets were the only team to bow out without scoring a goal, this year two teams—Civil and Mafco—have also existed without accessing Airtel network.
Bullets, Eagles and Wanderers sailed through without conceding a goal. n