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Sports Editor
(At Nkoloma Stadium)
In Lusaka, Zambia
Courtesy of Swazi MTN

LUSAKA – An elated Mbabane Swallows head coach, Thabo ‘Koki’ Vilakati ran short of words in hailing his players after the historic 2-1 win over top Zambian side, Zanaco FC in match number 57 of the 22nd Total CAF Champions League here yesterday.

Vilakati, under immense pressure in recent weeks, after uncharacteristic performances by his over-achieving squad, said the players deserved all the plaudits for winning the first leg tie away from home.
“I can’t thank the players enough. They stuck to the game plan and went out there to fight for the badge of the team. Hats off to my players,” Vilakati told the members of the media packed in the stadium press room after the match.

Vilakati also paid tribute to the 70 travelling Swallows fans, who endured a tiring 22-hour trip punctuated by a six-hour long wait at Ngunguluza border post and spent the night inside the bus to honour the match.
“They deserve this win because they sacrificed a lot in coming here to support the team. They really gave us a lot of support and confidence,” Vilakati said.

He admitted that Zanaco FC were tough opponents and really gave his side a run for their money, in particular in the first half.
“We told ourselves if we could get a win it would be fine and a win would be a bonus. First half they came hard on us, we absorbed the pressure but we went all out in the second half. The pitch was muddy but we had to come up with a game plan. We will not be complacent in the second half but this game is now history, we have to focus on the next game,” Vilakati said.

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