On the eve of the latest episode of the Blantyre derby featuring Mighty Wanderers and Big Bullets, I bumped into Nomads diehard Bonzo who sells roasted maize at Kudya and he told me that this time around, his team would emerge triumphant. Bonzo even had reasons: “Biggie, ulendo uno Bullets tiyiwonetsa zakuda tapeza ntela wobvuta kwambiri kwa sing’anga wakwa Mgona ku Lilongwe, akuchita kunena kuti 2-0 man!”
But yesterday, just a day after Bullets once again emerged winners in the latest derby, I visited the fella and the look on his face was enough to tell me he was in no mood to discuss football. “Biggie tisakambe zampira apa, ndipatseni mpata I want to breathe.” (I am sure he meant to tell me he wanted to rest). The message was loud and clear and I could not help, but spare a thought for poor Bonzo.
It was a confirmation of how the Nomads have terribly lost their way so much that they have already lost three competitive derbies to their rivals and sadly, they are battered, bruised and barely recognisable as a giant. Not only have the Nomads been stripped of the aura of invicibility that used to be a big part of their identity and their success, they have also been reduced to mere pussycats battling for survival in an increasingly hostile environment.
But instead of digging deep into their hearts and conducting some soul-search on their short-comings, the Nomads have sunk so low that everything they do, has to be related to juju—they do not want to see TNM Super League mascot ‘Shasha’ because they believe he bewitches them and last week they chased Big Bullets coaches from BAT Ground on the same alleged suspicions.
When Bullets were busy beefing up their squad, Wanderers were probably courting a sing’anga somewhere in Mwanza to help them beat their enemy. Such has become Bullets’ superiority that their fans celebrated more when they drew against Silver than Saturday’s win over Wanderers. It has become a norm that it is not a question of winning, but rather how many goals.
But since the Nomads are so much into the world of juju and charms, maybe they can try a guy called Gambatuka from kwa Khwisi in Lilongwe, he claims to have the best. I am offering to take them there and oh yes! Manchetser United as well, but at a fee of course. Glory be to God. Uloliwe..uloliwe wayidudula hii…neng’asiza [The train is pushing].