Maxwell Phodo’s late goal cemented Silver Strikers’ TNM Super League log table top position after beating Nyasa Big Bullets 1-0 yesterday at Silver Stadium in Lilongwe.
The Central Bankers’ victory has taken them to finish the first-round as leaders, with 35 points.
Bullets remain second, on 26 point, but have a game in hand.
At Silver Stadium, Phodo broke the hearts of Bullets players and fans when he volleyed the ball into the top of the net, finishing a fluid move that had involved Chisomo Mpachika, Prince Phiri Rodwell Robert and Duncan Nyoni
Despite a high tempo start to the game, both teams failed to score in the first-half.
Chisomo Mpachika had an opportunity to put the hosts ahead after three minutes, but wasted a Mark Fodya well-taken corner-kick.
At the start of the second-half, Bullets substituted Misheck Selemani for Hassan Kajoke and Ernest Petro for Mike Mkwate.
But it was the hosts who were first to settle and threatened to score.
The combination of Thuso Paipi, Chisomo Mpachika and Chikondi Kamanga controlled the midfield to give Bullets midfield a tough time.
But despite dominating, the hosts failed to create chances for strikers Stain Davies and Phodo.
Against the run of play, Bullets could have scored in the 67th minute through Zicco Nkanda, but he headed over the bar a Mcfaren Mgwira cross.
The visitors continued to press and the easiest of chances again fell to them in the 70th minute but Kajoke, who was put through by Gomezgani Chirwa, rounded off defenders Mpachika and Fodya, but goalkeeper Charles Thom came to the rescue with a timely save.
Silver coach Dan Kabwe said the effort warranted the team to win.
He said: “The win today is a result of playing well. We have been playing well in most games, and today we played well, too.
“The boys played according to the game plan. It is so great to have finished top in the first-round.”
Bullets coach Kallisto Pasuwa said his charges were outplayed.
“We were second on the ball for most parts and there was also lack of confidence. We need to work in these areas before our next fixture. It is still a long way before the league ends; so, we still have an opportunity to turn things around,” said Pasuwa.
At Kamuzu Stadium, Mighty Wanderers yesterday survived a Red Lions scare thanks to last minute goal from Misheck Bottoman, which cancelled a Matthews Simbeye goal.
The Nomads had themselves to blame for failing to collect maximum points, after missing two penalties.
The Nomads had a chance to take a lead in the 10th minute, when they were awarded a penalty after Chikoti Chirwa handled the ball in the box.
But Red Lions goalkeeper Jacob Kaunda saved a Babatunde Adepojo spot-kick.
In other games, Blue Eagles beat Ekwendeni Hammers 2-0 at Nankhaka Stadium and Kamuzu Barracks thrashed Mafco 4-0 at Civo Stadium..