After missing Chinese Women’s Super League opening matches due to an injury, Malawi women’s football icon Tabitha Chawinga returned to action with a bang scoring the winning goal for her club Jiangsu Huatai in their 1-0 victory over Shanghai SVT.
This was Tabitha’s first full match since joining the club in January this year from Sweden’s Kvarnsveden. Her debut was delayed due to a knee injury she suffered during training.
Chawinga was excited with the winning goal, saying it inspired her to work hard towards golden boot ambition in Chinese Women’s Super League.
She said: “I missed Chinese Football Association [CFA] Cup matches due to an injury. I am glad the team won two and drew one to qualify for the quarter-final.”
“Last week, in the first game away to Wuhan, we lost 2-1. But in second game away to Shanghai SVT, I scored the winner in a match I made my full debut. Thank you all for the quick recovery wishes. I am now [fully] fit.”
Chawinga’s debut goal came in the 29th minute and helped her team to move to fourth position with three points.
Dalian Quanjian lead the table with six points from two wins while Wuhan are second also with six points from two games but are separated by goal difference. Changchun are third with four points.
Chawinga is the third African in the Chinese Women’s Super League after Cameroonian Gaelle Enganamouit and Nigerian Asisat Oshoala.
Both Enganamouit and Oshoala were signed by Dalian early this year and have marked their maiden season by clinching a double.
On her move to China, Chawinga said she was getting along well at his club.
“It’s been a great experience as I have met new friends,” she said. “It’s a new culture but it’s all fun and I like it.”
Soccer analyst Charles Nyirenda said Chawinga had proved her worth in the Chinese Women’s Super League.
“Her moving to China provided her a challenge. Mind you, China’s women’s football is fast improving. They were recently ranked 17th by Fifa.
“We have also seen reputable names moving to China such as Brazilian forward Cristiane signing for Changchun and former Spain captain Vero Boquete.”