Both Malawi and Comoros celebrate Independence Day with COSAFA Cup victories

Malawi’s Alick Lungu and Comoros’ Alfonsi Ahmed Aslane

* Both winners crowned their celebrations with Man of the Match awards

* CosafaCup2023 wished both nations a Happy Independence Day

By Duncan Mlanjira

Both Malawi and Comoros won their opening matches at the 2023 Confederation of Southern African Football Associations (COSAFA) — and coincidentally both were celebrating their Independence Day, July 6.


A Twitter from COSAFA congratulated the two nations on their Independence Day celebrations, which the two teams also capped it with two being voted for the Man of the Match awards — Malawi’s  COSAFA Cup victories Alick Lungu and Comoros’ Alfonsi Ahmed Aslane.

Back home Malawi celebrated their Independence Day at Bingu National Stadium through various activities that included an international club friendly match that ended 0-0 between Malawi’s TNM Super League champions, Nyasa Big Bullets and Tanzania’s champions, Young Africans (Yanga).

The match was watched by President of the United Republic of Tanzania, Samia Suluhu Hassan, who was invited by her counterpart, Lazarus Chakwera to join Malawians in celebrating the 59th Independence Day.

The Flames were recognized by COSAFA as the first side to pull an upset when they stunned reigning champions Zambia 1-0 at the King Zwelithini Stadium in Durban, South Africa.

While the Comoros sailed past Seychelles with a comfortable 3-0 victory to go top of Group B ahead of Malawi thanks to goal difference.

The loss for Zambia sees them in third position ahead of Seychelles, who face Malawi in their next match, with the defending champions facing Comoros in a must-win match on Sunday to stand any chance of defending their title.


A first half own goal by Zambian defender, Aaron Katebe was enough for the Flames to hold on for a vital victory, in which they outclassed their opponents in their first against the six-time COSAFA Cup champions in this competition since 2015.

Flames interim coach Patrick Mabedi started with first choice goalkeeper Brighton Munthali with Mighty Wanderers right back Stanley Sanudi captaining the side from the back while Silver Strikers’ Nickson Mwase in central defence and Dennis Chembezi on the leftback position.

Civil Service United’s Lloyd Aron played just in front of the defence while Chimwemwe Idana took central of the midfield as Nyasa Bullets’ Alick Lungu was deployed on the right wing with Bangwe All Stars’ Robert Saizi on the right wing.

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Joint TNM Super League current joint top scorer Lanjesi Nkhoma played behind twin strikers Zanaco forward Chawanangwa Kaonga and Mighty Wanderers’ Christopher Kumwembe — as a 3-5-2 formation, which more room for adjustments to 4-4-2 or 4-5-1, both when attacking and defending.

They were the better side from the word go piling pressure on the defending champions. The squad is dominated by local players with Zambia-based duo of Chawanangwa Kaonga and Chifundo Mphasi as the only abroad based stars.

The Flames face Seychelles on Sunday and will play their last group stage match against Comoros on Tuesday, July 11.

Mabedi’s full squad is as follows:

Goalkeepers: Brighton Munthali (Blue Eagles), Austin Chirambo (Nyasa Big Bullets Reserves) and Innocent Nyasulu  (Mighty Tigers);

Defenders: Macdonald Lameck (Blue Eagles), Dennis Chembezi (unattached), Dan Chimbalanga (MAFCO), Lawrence Chaziya, Stanley Sanudi ( Mighty Wanderers), Nickson Mwase (Silver Strikers);

Midfielders: Alick Lungu, Frank Willard, Patrick Mwaungulu (Nyasa Big Bullets, Blessings Singini (Ekwendeni Hammers), Chikumbutso Salima, Robert Saizi (Bangwe All Stars), Chimwemwe Idana, Chikondi Kamanga, Patrick Macheso (Silver Strikers), Chrispin Mapemba (Nyasa Big Bullets Reserves);

Strikers: Chawanangwa Kaonga (Zanaco, Zambia), Chifundo Mphasi (Shamuel Academy), Christopher Kumwembe, Gaddie Chirwa (Mighty Wanderers) Lanjesi Nkhoma (Nyasa Big Bullets).