By: Andrew Cane Chilapondwa
They are cross-town rivals from the origin but the Blantyre based giants have united to save blood when the two teams battle it out in the inaugural FAM Chifundo Shield at Civo Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Just like Real Madrid and Barcelona derby in Spain, the sworn in rivals will invade Lilongwe this week but with a different purpose of saving lives by mobilizing people to donate blood to the needy.
First of its kind, the Football Association of Malawi (FAM) introduced the Shield Cup as one way of launching the new season. The Shield Cup is contested between the champions of the previous Super League season and the holders of the FA Cup.
Big Bullets won last season’s Super League whilst Mighty Wanderers won Carlsberg Cup in the same season.
The FA has partnered Malawi Blood Transfusion Service (MBTS) with the aim of reaching out to many people who are in need of blood in the country.
Speaking to the media ahead of the showdown, FAM’s Commercial Director Limbani Matola said the association made it very possible to urge the two teams to take part in this important initiative.
“We have signed contracts with the two teams that all the logistics will be taken care of by FAM and we have also agreed that all gate proceedings from the match will go to Kamuzu Central Hospital to buy patients trolleys,” he said.
On their part, MBTS through their Public Relations Officer Abel Kaombe, hailed the association for partnering them in such an important event.
“This is the first time for MBTS to partner a big association like FAM. This partnership will help us reach out to many people who are in need of blood in the country.”
“We have lined up several programs ahead of the showdown in Lilongwe. On Thursday, MBTS will be at City Mall and in Area 23 where people will be donating blood and on Friday, we will be at Chinsapo, Mtsiliza Primary School, Area 36 and M’buka Primary School where Malawians will be saving lives through donating blood.”
“And on Saturday, MBTS will be at Civo Stadium from 8 AM-12 Noon where thousands of football lovers and well-wishers will be urged to donate blood before watching the match. We are also urging both teams to mobilize their supporters to come out in their large numbers to donate blood,” he said.
Proceeds from the game will go towards the purchase of Patients Trolleys at Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH).