Mighty Wanderers yesterday warmed up a chilly afternoon with a vintage display, demolishing Chitipa United 4-0 at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre to sail through to the FDH Bank quarter-finals in style.
However, their reserve side Wanderers Reserve, spoiled the party after they succumbed to a late goal against Ekwendeni Hammers at Mzuzu Stadium.
At Kamuzu Stadium, man of the match Vincent Nyangulu was the hero of the day as he netted a hat trick in the one-sided affair while substitute Peter Wadabwa scored the fourth.
Chitipa United did not come to the party despite boasting of the likes of Emmanuel Muyira, Mathews Sibale, Dumisani Jere and captain Handy Ng’andu, who on a good day, make the Northern Region-based outfit a respectable opponent.
Wanderers, on the other hand, knew what was at stake and were serious in their approach to the game played without supporters.
Full backs Francis Mlimbika and Stanley Sanudi were the Nomads’ victory architects as they were always on the move on the right and left wings while Vitumbiko Kumwenda, Mischeck Bottoman and Isaac Kaliati controlled the midfield making Nyangulu’s task of scoring easy-peasy.
Bottoman set up Nyangulu to head in the first goal near post just five minutes into the match.
The towering striker was back on target in the 37th minute, this time heading in from Kaliati corner kick for the first-half to end 2-0.
Nyangulu completed a hat trick in the 54th minute after Sanudi beat an offside trap and chipped in the ball into the area.
Chitipa only had one shot on target in the 80th minute when Wanderers goalkeeper Richard Chipuwa denied substitute denied Muyira at close range after an interchange of passes between the visitors.
Moments later veteran Wadabwa sealed Chitipa’s fate in the 85th minute, just some minutes after replacing Wadabwa when he glanced in a Kumwenda cross.
Wanderers assistant coach Albert Mpinganjira said the Nomads are on a mission to continue their legacy of being the team that wins every inaugural cup in the county.
He said: “We told our players not to waste any chance this afternoon. I am happy that we have managed to score four goals and made it to the quarterfinals.
“We want to win this cup to keep our reputation as the team that grabs every cup when it is introduced,” he said.
Chitipa coach Christopher Nyambose blamed the team’s loss on the early goal, saying it downed the players’ morale.
“After that first goal, we made some mistakes that led to the goals to keep on coming,” he said.
However, the Nomads Reserves spoiled the celebrations in Blantyre after losing to Ekwendeni Hammers.
The match seemed set for penalties until former Wanderers defender Harry Nyirenda broke the deadlock in the 87th minute.
Meanwhile in Lilongwe, Silver Strikers also booked a place in the quarter-finals after seeing off Moyale Barracks 2-0.
Frank Banda gave the Bankers the lead from the spot kick in the 28th minute before Duncan Nyoni doubled the lead just after the break in the 49th.