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Bullets Reserves held to 1-1 draw by Ntopwa

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FCB Nyasa Big Bullets Reserves came back from a goal down to earn a 1-1 home draw against Ntopwa in the ThumbsUp Southern Region Football League at Kamuzu Stadium on Monday.
The draw meant that the defending champions missed a chance to move top of the table in Group B of the new Premier Division season.

What happened

For most of the opening half, the tie proved to be a chess game as both sides played rather cautiously moving forward.

Six minutes had to elapse before we witnessed the first shot on target of the tie as Gift Lamowa struck a decent freekick to force a fine save from the visitors’ goalie Steve Bwanali at the near post to concede a corner kick.
From that moment the tie began to open as chances now became available for both sides.

Ntopwa, who got relegated from the Super League two seasons ago, were presented with several chances but fluffed them with a lack of composure in front of goal.

At the other end, our youngsters had their sight on goal but also lacked what it takes to score.

A dubious moment arrived five minutes before the break when Chrispin Mapemba’s long-range effort slipped Bwanali’s hands but failed to fully cross the goal line as the ball diverted from the goal mouth to let the visitors escape the danger unharmed.

Having offered only a handful of chances, the first half could only come to an end with the scoreline goalless.
Three minutes into the second half we had another chance to open the scoring but Macray Chiwaya headed a well-weighted free-kick over the bar despite being unmarked.

Wanting more from his team, coach Enos Chatama then made an offensive change by throwing in Wongani Kaponya who replaced Useni Assani.

Our desperate push for a goal suffered a blow in the 78th minute when the visitors took the lead through Japhet Kaudzimbi who beat our goalkeeper Austin Chirambo with a fine low finish.

Seven minutes after going down we provided a reply with a goal from Gift Lamowa who connected well a fine cutback pass from Kaponya.

Inside the last five minutes of the tie, Bullets gave everything to stage a comeback but it wasn’t to be as Ntopwa firmly hang on to get a point from a fixture they were the second favourite to get the result.

What it means

Having dropped points today, our youngsters are now on eight points after four games.
If they collected maximum points, they could have leapfrogged Fomo FC at the top in Group B of the competition.

Enos Chatama reaction

“It was really one of those bad days in the office. We never played and we never came to the party. We played badly, there was no transition, there was no creativity from the midfield to the attacking phase, and we did not use the chances we created.

“The past two games have been bad for our team, but all in all, football is like that. Sometimes you play better sometimes you don’t. This season we have started badly but we will go back to the drawing board, correct the mistakes and move on.”

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