Malawi’s Flames Thursday recovered from a 2-0 loss to Rwanda at the ongoing Cecafa Tusker Cup to beat Eritrea 3-2 at a waterlogged Nelson Mandela National Stadium in Uganda.
The victory was a relief to Coach Kinnah Phiri and his backroom staff after the Minister of Youth Development and Sports Enock Chihana said the future of the coach would be determined by the results from the tournament.
With the social media awash with calls for the coach to step down and a picture of Kinnah in tears after losing to Rwanda having gone viral, the pressure was just too much for the coach.
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The game was almost postponed due to bad weather following a downpour in Kampala.
Kinnah made some changes to the original team that lost to Rwanda dropping to the bench defender George Nyirenda, midfielder Bernard Harawa and pint-sized striker Green Harawa from the squad.
He started John Lanjesi at the back for Nyirenda partnering Foster Namwera, Micium Mhone for Bernard Harawa and Rodrick Gonani for Green Harawa.
But he maintained goalkeeper Charles Swini, defenders Steve Chagoma, Namwera and Moses Chavula.
Apart from Mhone, the coach also kept midfielders Chimango Kayira, Patrick Masanjala and Joseph Kamwendo.
Striker Chiukepo Msowoya who scored a brace, was also thrown in to partner Rodrick Gonani.
But as 3pm, the kickoff time drew closer, an announcement was made that the games had been called off due to a storm only for the game to go on a pitch that resembled a pigsty than a football ground
Yet Malawi adapted well to the pitch condition and employed long shots and passes which were quiet effective while the opponents passing game flopped.
Chiukepo opened the score sheet just three minutes into the game with a superb header after a brilliant performance from impressive Mhone whose cross from the right flank picked up the striker.
Mhone doubled the lead in the 11th minute with a thunderbolt from 25 yard after rounding off Eritrea defender for the first half to end 2-0.
With the pitch now a bit dry Eritrea turned the tap on and attacked well making the Flames to start defending.
But Chiukepo completed a brace in 67th minute with a header this time from a Joseph Kamwendo cross.
The Red Sea Boys, however, did not falter.
They pulled one back four minutes later through Yosief Ghide and scored the other goal just a minute before the end of the game from a spot kick through captain Hermon Tekle