Malawi forward Gabadinho Mhango scored a brace of goals as The Flames came from behind to stun Zimbabwe with a 2-1 victory in their Africa Cup of Nations Group B clash at the Kouekong Stadium in Bafoussam on Friday.
The win keeps Malawi’s hopes of reaching the second round alive, while Zimbabwe are almost certainly out, as are Comoros, who were beaten 2-0 by Morocco in a game that kicked off in Yaounde at the same time.
Mhango had missed Malawi’s opening loss to Guinea with a COVID-19 infection, but returned to make a winning impact for The Flames.
Zimbabwe forward Ishmael Wadi gave his side the lead as he headed in a cross from Onismor Bhasera. He connected with the ball some 15 yards from goal and it looped in.
But that lead lasted only four minutes before Mhango provided a neat first-time finish at the back post from Francisco Madinga’s deep cross.
The latter then struck the frame of the goal early in the second period, before Malawi did take the lead.
A pass forward from Mhango was missed by Madinga, but defender Teenage Hadebe hesitated as he expected goalkeeper Petros Mhari to come and collect the loose ball, only for the Flames forward to steal in and score his second from six-yards.
Malawi have three points from their two games and lie third in the pool behind Senegal and Guinea, who each have four. Zimbabwe have lost both their matches to date.
Malawi, whose only other win at the Cup of Nations was a 3-0 success over Algeria in 2010, play Senegal in their final Group B game at the same venue on Tuesday, while Zimbabwe will meet Guinea in Yaounde.
Morocco dominated their game against Comoros and missed a penalty in the win as goals from Selim Amallah and Zakaria Aboukhlal were enough for the three points. Sevilla forward Youssef En Nesyri was the player who missed from the spot.