Local football giants Nyasa Big Bullets and Mighty Wanderers will meet in the semi-finals of the Airtel Top 8 following a draw held yesterday at Nankhaka Stadium in Dwangwa, Nkhotakota.
In the other semi-final, winner of the tie between Civil Service (Civo) United and Karonga United will face winners of the match involving defending champions Silver Strikers and TN Stars.
The was held at half time during the match between Bullets and Mafco FC.
Bullets came from behind to edge Mafco 2-1 to sail through on 5-2 aggregate. The People’s Team won the first leg 3-1 in Blantyre.
On the other hand, the Nomads sailed through 5-4 on post-match penalties after tying one-all on aggregate.
The Mzuzu-based Malawi Defence Force (MDF) side won the first leg 1-0 in Blantyre and the Nomads won by the same margin in the return leg on Saturday to force the match into penalties.
In yesterday’s match, Mafco surged ahead in the first 18th minute through Paul Phiri, who was also named man-of-the-match.
However, a second half brace from Bullets’ lanky Nigerian forward Babatunde Adepoju sealed Bullets’ semi-final slot.
He beat an off-side trap to ghost in from the blind side for the first goal in the 81st minute.
The Salima-based side protested the goal, arguing that it was scored from an off-side position, but referee Mercy Mziya stood her ground.
Bullets took the lead when they were awarded a penalty in the last minute of regulation time following a foul on Msowoya.
Again, Mafco protested vehemently for over five minutes, but the referee stuck to her guns and up stepped Adepoju to convert from the spot-kick.
He has taken his tally to four goals. Adepoju also scored a brace in the first leg.
Mafco FC assistant coach Yohane Fulaye blamed the loss on poor officiation.
He said: “With this kind of officiation our football cannot develop. The first goal was scored from a clear off-side position while the penalty was dubious.”
Bullets assistant coach Peter ‘Mjojo’ Mponda said it was a tough match.
He said: “Mafco were out to intimidate us. They were too physical, but at half time we told our players to stand firm and it paid off.”