Local photographer brings a national hero to an international audience


In this great photo feature, Amos Gumulira tells us all about the “Rising Striker” Chiukepo Msoway of Malawi’s national football team known as The Flames. Amos writes,

“Until recently, Malawian football has been nothing to write home about. The memory of their 1984 appearance in the Africa Cup of Nations was starting to grow dim and supporters of The Flames, as they are affectionately known, were starting to lose hope.
With a grand entrance, The Flames thumped World Cup finalists, Algeria 3-0 on January 11, 2010, propelling them into the quarter final of the tournament that doubled as a FIFA World Cup qualifier.
Much of their success has been attributed to the rising soccer star, Chiukepo Msowoya, who has been nicknamed ‘Wonderstriker’ on the official FIFA World Cup website.”

I have added a couple of the images that are part of the photo feature, which you can find here.

Malawi's rising Soccer Star and 2008 footballer of the year Chiukepo Msowoya plays with the ball at Kamuzu Stadium October 29, 2009 during preparatory training for COSAFA games scheduled for October 31, 2009 in Zimbabwe.
Malawi's rising Soccer Star and 2008 footballer of the year Chiukepo Msowoya plays with the ball at Kamuzu Stadium October 29, 2009 during preparatory training for COSAFA games scheduled for October 31, 2009 in Zimbabwe. © Amos Gumulira/ Twenty Ten Project/ Africa Media Online

Ivorian defenders Bamba Souleymane, shirt no.4 and Gosso Gosso, right, tries to stop Malawi's upcoming top goal scorer Chiukepo Msowoya during a joint 2010 World Cup and Africa Cup of Nations qualifier game between Malawi and Ivory Coast at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre, October 10, 2009.   Malawi is not a very big name in Africa’s Football circles. But the recent joint 2010 FIFA World Cup and Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers has seen Malawi beat some of the continent’s big names in football such as Egypt, Guinea, DRC, and recently drew one-all with one of Africa’s Football Power Houses, Ivory Coast.  Malawi’s performance in the qualifiers has surprised the continent and the world at large but such wonders can not go without mentioning the name of one upcoming Football Star Chiukepo Msowoya who has scored more goals for Malawi during the qualifier matches than any other player in the Flames. The 21 year old player who plays for Liga Malcumana FC in Maputo, Mozambique has scored a total of nine (9) goals during the 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifier games putting Malawi on the African Football map.  FIFA’s official website FIFA.com has described Msowoya as Malawi’s Wonderstriker due to his star performance in the qualifier games. Msowoya who takes Samuel Eto as his football idol says his success comes about because he listens very much to what his coaches teach him. His ambition in his football career is to score as many goals as possible as well as creating chances for his teammates to score goals. Chiukepo Msowoya was the 2008 Malawi Olympic Committee Football Athlete of the Year; 2008 TNM Super League Player of the Year; and also Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) Entertainers of the Year Football Player of the Year 2008. The question which arises is: Why such an upcoming goal marksman could be playing in Mozambique instead of Europe or South Africa? Is it because of Malawi’s humble FIFA ranking which has just risen 15 steps from 105 to 90 following Malawi National team. © Amos Gumulira/ Twenty Ten Project/ Africa Media Online
Ivorian defenders Bamba Souleymane, shirt no.4 and Gosso Gosso, right, tries to stop Malawi's upcoming top goal scorer Chiukepo Msowoya during a joint 2010 World Cup and Africa Cup of Nations qualifier game between Malawi and Ivory Coast at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre, October 10, 2009. © Amos Gumulira/ Twenty Ten Project/ Africa Media Online

Malawi's goal poacher and 2008 footballer of the year, Chiukepo Msowoya during preparatory training on October 7, 2009, for the World Cup, Africa Cup of Nations qualifier game between Malawi and Ivory Coast played on October 10, 2009. © Amos Gumulira/ Twenty Ten Project/ Africa Media Online
Malawi's goal poacher and 2008 footballer of the year, Chiukepo Msowoya during preparatory training on October 7, 2009, for the World Cup, Africa Cup of Nations qualifier game between Malawi and Ivory Coast played on October 10, 2009. © Amos Gumulira/ Twenty Ten Project/ Africa Media Online