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Cosafa Cup Match Day 4 Review: Malawi let lead slip against Botswana, Angola edge out Mauritius

3:36 AM SGT 31/5/18
CHAN 2018: Angola
Group B took centre stage on Wednesday with Angola taking on Mauritius, while Botswana locked horns with Malawi

The 2018 Cosafa Cup Group B match day two games took place at the Seshego Stadium in Polokwane.

The first game of the day featured Angola and Mauritius with the former looking to return to winning ways having lost their first match of the tournament on Monday. 

Angola were stunned 2-1 by Botswana at the Old Peter Mokaba Stadium with Joao Manha Kaporah scoring Palancas Negras’ consolation goal in the second half.

Palancas Negras were facing a confident Mauritius side which had edged out Malawi 1-0 courtesy of Damien Balisson’s first half goal at the same venue.

The match was dominated by Angola from the start and they came close to breaking the deadlock 16 minutes into the game with Mauritius doing most of the defending. 

Show Cafumana found some space outside the Dodos box and he unleashed a powerful long range shot which was well-saved by Mauritius goalkeeper Jean Louis.

Palancas Negras continued to dominate the game, but they were very wasteful. Wilson had a glorious opportunity to make it 1-0 to Angola in the 42nd minute, but his lobbed shot came off the woodwork.

Mauritius and Angola were locked at 0-0 at the interval following a first half which was dominated by Palancas Negras. 

Srdan Vasiljevic, who is the Angolan head coach, was sent to the stands by Zimbabwean match referee Nomore Musundire a few minutes into the second half.

However, Vasiljevic’s charges continued to dominate the game and they managed to take the lead in the 62nd minute when Mauritius defender Chico Bana netted an own goal to make it 1-0 to Angola.

Angola then contained Mauritius in the closing stages of the game and ultimately emerged 1-0 winners on the day.

Meanwhile, the Zebras of Botswana were targeting their second successive win as they looked to remain at the top of the group standings with two games played.

On the other hand, Malawi were desperate to secure their maiden win in Group B and keep their hopes of advancing to the knockout stages alive.

The Flames got off to the perfect start as they broke the deadlock just five minutes into the game after the Zebras defence had failed to close down Precious Simbani.

The left-back, who had pushed forward, found some space outside the Botswana box before firing past Mwampule Masule with a low shot to make it 1-0 to Malawi.

The Zebras then took control of the game, but they struggled to create clear-cut chances as the Flames defence which was led by John Lanjesi, looked solid and organized.

The score was 1-0 to Malawi at the interval with Botswana having failed dismally to test keeper Brighton Munthali. 

Botswana head coach Major David Bright introduced Thatayaone Kgamanyane in the second half as the Zebras continued their search for the equalizing goal.

Kgamanyane, who scooped the 2017/18 Botswana Premier League Golden Boot after scoring 20 goals, looked lively for his side down the right-hand side.

The left-footed attacker played a delightful cross into the box and his teammate Kabelo Seakanyane headed the ball straight at Munthali, who made a comfortable save.

However, Seakanyeng was not to be denied in the 88th minute as he beat Munthali from close range to ensure that the game ended in a 1-1 draw. 

Wednesday’s results saw Botswana remain at the top of the Group B standings - a point above second-placed Mauritius and third-placed Angola, while Malawi are placed fourth with a single point.

Angola will wrap up their group stage campaign against Malawi on Friday, while Botswana are scheduled to face Mauritius on the same day.