Inspired by coach Nicholas Mhangoâ€™s tactics, cup specialists Moyale Barracks on Saturday qualified for the finals of the K60 million (about $240 000) Presidential Cup following a 3-2 win over Red Lions at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre.
The Kaningâ€™ina-based soldiers will meet winners of todayâ€™s other semi-final showdown between Big Bullets and Escom United at the same venue.
There was a time when it appeared scary for Moyale when the Reds scored two goals to reduce the defieceit to 3-2, but to his credit, Mhango didnâ€™t lose his nerve and urged his troops to fight on, and in the end they prevailed.
Steveen Mkandawire put Moyale in the lead 10 minutes into the game and then veteran Victor Phri added the second in the added time of the first half, before Mkandawire struck the third in the 69th minute to put the game beyond the Lionsâ€™ reach.
Precisely what gentle words of encouragement were delivered by the Redsâ€™ coach Collins Nkuna at half-time, remain firmly in the classified category, but suddenly there was renewed purpose in their play and it bore fruit when Chimango Chirwa hit one back in the 76th minute.
A few minutes later, Lovemore Mitengo scored an own goal, but it was not enough as Mhango urged his troops to fight on until virtually the last kick of the game.
Mhango said he had prepared for a win.
“I am happy that we have won, now we have to prepare for the final match,” said Mhango.
His counterpart Nkuna, who was once his assistance at Moyale, expressed disappointment with the loss.
“Iâ€™ts part of the game, we tried our best to come back into the game, but it just didnâ€™t work out. Our defence was somehow porous,” said Nkuna.