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Bullets Reserves beat Zomba Airbase to finish third in SRFL

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In their final ThumbsUp Southern Region Football League match this season, FCB Nyasa Big Bullets Reserves ran riot against Zomba Airbase as they defeated the military side 7-1 at the Kamuzu Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

Chrispin Mapemba, whose graduation into the first team is set to be confirmed, scored four on the day with Wongani Kaponya, Blessings Kanowa and Hadji Steven also registering their names on the scoresheet.

The result secured a third-position finish in the 2023 SRFL, a competition the young Bullets won last year.

What happened

Five minutes into the game Enos Chatama’s boys were ahead after claiming larger possession of the ball. Released by a fine lofted pass from centre-back Mussah Bwanali, Mapemba stormed into the area before smashing the ball to beat the keeper at the near post.

Six minutes later it was two for us and two for Mapemba who this time despatched a sublime free-kick 23 yards out.

Before the match, Mapemba lost his grandfather but it was proving to be his fruitful day in front of goal as he completed a hat-trick in the 37th minute with a simple tap-in after receiving a pass from Blessings Kanowa. 3-0 the opening period finished.

There was no stopping Mapemba in this tie as he got his fourth on the day, this time from the penalty spot after Kaponya was brought down in the area 13 minutes into the second half.

From scorer, Mapemba turned into a provider as he, with a precise cut-back pass, set up Kaponya for another easy tap-in to make it five-nil for us in 61 minutes.

On the very last day of their lowest-scoring season in their history, the 2022 league winners were proving to be rampant as soon as their fifth they added another through Kanowa who is having a first season with the reserves after graduating from Bullets youth side.

With the crisp exchange of passes, young Maule penetrated the military side through the middle before Kanowa, the Malawi national team U17 captain wrapped up the move with a delightful finish.

The young Bullets were not done with the visitors. Off the bench, the young and tall Steven added a seventh for us. The midfielder, who was having his debut, ran gloriously with the ball from the halfway line up into the box and rounded off the keeper before guiding it into the net to close the scoring in the 92nd minute.  7-1 it finished.

What it means

Bullets Reserves’ 2023 season came to an end on Sunday, finishing in third position in the league, third in the Nyasa Capital Finance Cup and first in the Aubrey Dimba Trophy. The team bowed out in the quarter-finals of the Champions Cup.

Overall, our youngsters played 38 games in all competitions in the just-ended season, winning 22 games, losing 7 games and drawing 10. They scored 75 goals and conceding 12 goals.

What Chatama said after the match

“Today it was not about the scoreline and winning the game, it was all about checking the progress of the team. You see how the season has progressed, it has been one of the seasons we’ve had a lot of youngsters in the team. They are developing little by little. We won today, the result does not count. You can see the mistakes the boys were making, they are schoolboy errors. They need to learn and progress.”

Next

It’s time to rest for the youngsters who will soon regroup in March to prepare for the next season which is set to start in April.

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