Zambia vs Botswana – Zambia matched through to the next round of the CHAN qualifiers after beating Botswana 3-2 in a nail-biting encounter played at the fortress Heroes Stadium.
Emmanuel Chabula, Kelvin Mubanga KAMPAMBA, and Bruce Musakanya were all on target as Zambia narrowly escaped an embarrassing boot out at the Hands of the Zebras.
BOTSWANA came determined and hungrier of the two sides and in their quest for an away goal, the Zebras stung a full to the rafters heroes stadium when they found the gap of the net in the 15th minute.
Zambia however back and the reply came ten minutes later. Enterprising Emmanuel Chabula who was having the game of his life in National colors bulldozed past a forest of Zebra stripes before he fired home from close range.
Larry Bwalya and Mubanga KAMPAMBA got gutted as their sweet short exchanges at the heart of the field kept sending waves of wows on the terraces but the crowd had to wait till the last minute of the first half.
Zambia won a foul at about 25 meters away and Mubanga stepped forward. The Nkana midfield genius applied some megawatt power behind the ball that wickedly sailed past the Botswana goalkeeper for Zambia to take the lead.
The Second half started on a slow note for Zambia as Mothusi Cooper took control of the midfield and Zambia got punished. Cooper dipped in a searching ball from the midfield and the ball fell on the ferocious right foot of BOY who made no mistake as Botswana equalised.
Botswana was qualifying after that equalised and they all dropped down to defend with the last drop of their blood.
It was a nervy match for both teams and the Zambians were throwing in everything. Chabula, Larry and Mubanga were all on their toes and kept the resilient Botswana defence working but all was not enough till Mbewe was withdrawn for BRUCE MUSAKANYA.
Fifteen minutes before time, Mubanga who was already the crowds darling danced past his marker with some quick stepovers before he released a defence splitter that found MUSAKANYA who struck from close range to put Zambia in front.
There was literally no leadership in the Zambian defence and Botswana would have scored at will had they not wasted the numerous chances they kept having. The pregnable Zambia defence kept going loose but Botswana failed to find the match needed winner as Zambia won 3-2 to progress to the next round.