By Erik Chiputula:
Maxwell Gastin scored a first half hat-trick as Silver Strikers beat TN Stars 4-0 to return at the summit of the TNM Super League log table.
The former Mzuni FC attacker exchanged passes with Danken Nyoni to slot home the opener inside first half hour at Silver Stadium, before adding the second ten minutes later.
He completed his hat-trick with six minute to go before half time to give Silver a comfortable three nil lead.
TN Stars were a much improved side in the second half as they managed to close spaces in midfield forcing Silver to play deep in their own half.
Their resilience at the back in the second half came to an end on the stroke of the half as Stain Davie scored the last goal for the day to hand Silver Striker much needed three points.
The victory has helped the Central Bankers to return at the summit of the TNM Super League Log table as they displaced Civo Service United who stayed at the top for just 24 hours.
After the match, Silver Strikers Assistant Coach MacDonald Mtetemera hailed his players for the three points saying “TN played better but am happy that we managed to win, that’s what we were looking for and am very happy for my boys for putting up such a gallant fight”
On his part, TN Stars coach Joseph Malizani said his boys were too slow in the first half “but we told them to close spaces and in the second half and there was an improvement despite conceding another goal. We will work on our weakness and I hope we will bounce back.”
In Blantyre, Nyasa Big Bullets have jumped into the top five after a 2-1 victory over Mighty Tigers.
Bullets Coach Kalisto Pasuwa made five changes to the line up that beat Mzuzu Warriors on Saturday as Nickson Nyasulu, Chimango Kaira, Bright Munthali, Luke Chima and Yamikani Fodya replaced Captain John Lanjesi, MacFarlane Mgwira, Mishack Selemani, Zicco Mkanda and suspended Precious Sambani.
The defending Champions relied on Yamikani Fodya’s first half goal from a free-kick before Zicco Mkanda came off the bench to complete the scoreline.
The Peoples team have moved to the fifth position with nine games played collecting 18 points.
Pasuwa admitted that although they collected maximum points, “It was a very difficult game more especially in the first half as the hosts were closing the lines, although we were trying to unlock them, they were very stubborn at the back until Fodya gave us the lead. We improved alot after some changes in the second half no wonder we scored another goal and am happy for the victory”
On the other hand, Tigers Mentor Trevor Kajawa said he was impressed with the perfomance of his boys.
“I am impressed with our perfomance. Bullets is a big team but we tried to compete with them in some areas only that we failed to defend set pieces” he said.
Following the loss, Tigers have been pushed to the relegation zone.