Phiri calls up Flames squad
BY MABVUTO KAMBUWE
Kamuzu Barracks first choice goalkeeper Lemani Nthala, Jaffalie Chande and Richard Mbulu have been included in a Malawi National Football Team squad to face China Select in a friendly match on January 28 to mark the official opening of the Bingu National Stadium in Lilongwe.
Flames caretaker coach Gerald Phiri Snr on Wednesday named the squad comprising local players from newly crowned TNM Super League champions, Kamuzu Barracks, Be Forward Wanderers, Nyasa Big Bullets, Mafco and Silver Strikers.
Red Lions, Moyale Barracks and Mzuni FC have also contributed players to the squad. With 10 soldiers in the squad, it represents the largest contingent of Malawi Defence Force (MDF) players called up for the Flames ever.
The large contingent is just rewards for a season in which, besides Kamuzu Barracks being named champions, several players put up eye-catching displays which won them plaudits from far and wide.
Mbulu finished as the top goal scorer in the TNM Super League whereas Nthala was in top form throughout the season as KB won the league title.
Chande rediscovered his goal-scoring boots towards the end of the season, notably the four goals he scored in two legs against Nyasa Big Bullets in the Luzo TV Bus Ipite Bonanza.
Phiri will be looking to redeem his pride having led Malawi Under-20 National Football Team to a disappointing campaign at the Cosafa Youth Championship in South Africa.
This will be the first match for the Flames to play at the magnificent facility. Wanderers and Bullets were the first teams to play at the stadium in the Luso Bus Ipite Bonanza early this month.
Goalkeepers: Ernest Kakhobwe (Nyasa Big Bullets), Richard Chipuwa (Be Forward Wanderers) and Lemani Nthala (Kamuzu Barracks).
Defenders: Stanley Sanudi (Be Forward Wanderers), Steve Chagoma (Blue Eagles), Paul Phiri (Mafco), John Lanjesi, Yamikani Fodya (both Nyasa Big Bullets), Mike Ntonyo, Thoko Stambuli and Lucky Malata (all Silver Strikers)
Midfielders: Isaac Kaliati (Be Forward Wanderers), Gilbert Chirwa (Blue Eagles), Harvey Mkacha, Davie Banda (both Kamuzu Barracks), Saidi Mtekama (Mafco), Dalitso Sailesi, Mike Mkwate (both Nyasa Big Bullets), Chikoti Chirwa (Red Lions FC), Duncan Nyoni (Silver Strikers), Yamikani Chester (Tigers) and Chimango Kaira (unattached)
Strikers: Muhamad Sulumba (Nyasa Big Bullets), Richard Mbulu (Mafco), Gasten Simkonda, Khuda Muyawa (both Moyale Barracks), Jaffali Chande (Be Forward Wanderers), Manase Chiyesa (Kamuzu Barracks), Luwindiko Mushani (Mzuni).