Nyasa Big Bullets defeated visiting Karonga United 3-1 in the TNM Super League at Kamuzu Stadium on Saturday.
The People’s Team made a statement against Karonga United, scoring three goals in the opening 20 minutes. The visitors had a debt to pay after they denied Bullets maximum points in the first-round following a 0-0 draw away in Karonga.
Patrick Phiri opened the scoring against his home side within four minutes to put Bullets ahead, before providing an assist to Nelson Kangunje who notched the second goal in the 12th minute.
Bullets were outstanding as they outplayed Karonga United in all departments with captain John Lanjesi, Bashir Maunde and Yamikani Fodya manning the defense, while Henry Kabichi, Mike Mkwate and Kangunje coordinated beautifully in midfield as McPharlen Mgwira and Ernest Petro fed the forwards Chiukepo Msowoya and Phiri from the wings.
Msowoya netted the third goal just five minutes after Kangunje had put The People’s Team two-up. The striker kept himself calm after getting the ball inside the six-yard box and sent it over his young brother Happy Msowoya’s head in between Karonga goalposts. Bullets led the visitors 3-0 at the end of the first half.
Bullets came close in the 53rd minute when Msowoya sent a beautiful pass to Mgwira who spotted Phiri in the box and sent a great cross from the right wing, but the striker was unlucky to net his second goal as he blasted the ball over the crossbar.
A moment later Kabichi had his goal disallowed. The in form midfielder who was left unmarked in the six-yard box received a pass from Msowoya and simply tapped the ball into the net, however the assistant referee saw an offside.
Bullets made a double substitution with 20 minutes left, introducing striker Bright Munthali for Man of the Match Phiri and right-back Pilirani Zonda who came on for injured Lanjesi.
The People’s Team had an appeal for a penalty turned down in the 74th minute when substitute Munthali was pushed inside the penalty area but the referee waved play on. The visitors launched an attack and made way past Zonda to break through and pulled one back through Bernard Msiska with 15 minutes remaining.
Fischer Kondowe, who came on from the bench to replace Petro in the 80th minute, made a wonderful run from the left and found his way into the 18-yard area where he laid a low ball to Munthali but the uncomposed striker sent the ball wide with probably Bullets’ final clear chance.
Following the win, Bullets took their unbeaten run to 13 games and still top the TNM Super League log table with 45 points, eight ahead of second-placed BE Forward Wanderers who now have 37 points after beating Civil Sporting Club on Saturday at Civo Stadium.
The Nomads, who have a game in hand after playing 18 matches, face Masters Security in Dedza on Sunday.