Gor edge out Tusker

Thursday, February 9th, 2023 10:00 | By
Deogratious Ojok of Tusker FC is tackled by Dennis Nga’ng’a of Gor Mahia FC (Below) during their FKF-PL match staged at Kasarani Stadium, Nairobi on February 8 2023. PD/RODGERS NDEGWA

Gor Mahia piled on the woes of Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Premier League defending champions Tusker by defeating them 2-1 at Kasarani main stadium yesterday,

Following the win, second-placed K’ogalo kept the pressure on table-toppers Nzoia Sugar who maintained the position after an emphatic 3-1 victory over Kariobangi Sharks in another midweek action at Utalii grounds.

The loss by Tusker resulted in the team dropping from the fourth to the fifth position with the floundering fortunes bound to put pressure on Head Coach Robert Matano as the Brewers have now gone four matches without a win. They last savoured success on January 22 when they whacked Sofapaka 2-1.

Nzoia and Tusker are still separated by four points as KCB and Kenya Police joined the frontrunners for the title after securing maximum points as well in their respective matches.

Yesterday, Gor who are on a roll held the edge and were finally rewarded in the 31st minute when Sydney Ochieng’ struck a cheeky goal that appeared to suck the energy out of Tusker as the match wore on.

Tusker somehow managed to pick themselves up to net the equaliser through Shami KIbwana’s free kick.

The league’s top scorer Benson Omala then assured Gor of maximum points when he scored from the penalty spot in the 85th minute after an infringement inside the box.

 At Utalii, Nzoia Sugar made a spirited second-half display to bring the Sharks down to earth.

Sharks enjoyed the ascendancy in the first half as Nzoia struggled to settle into the highly physical encounter that was well officiated by Josephine Wanjiku.

The determination by the Sharks finally paid off in the 7th minute when Mathew Kibiwott and Julius Masaba exchanged passes with the ball falling in the path of Keith Imbali who let fly a screamer that beat Nzoia goalkeeper Matthews Kitasi all the way.

Although seemingly toned down in this period, Nzoia made half-hearted raids mainly through two-goal hero Joseph Mwangi and Vincent Mahiga with the latter coming close in the 19th minute only for his shot to be cleared to safety by Dan Guyo in Sharks’ defence.

Fortune Omotto of Sharks would also have done better with an in-swinging cross by Tyson Otieno later in the game with Nzoia enduring a torturous period as they trailed 1-0 going into halftime.

But if the first stanza belonged to Sharks, the second was Nzoia’s who made an energetic start, Mwangi, who has seven goals in the campaign, latched onto a pass from Kevin Juma before firing sumptuously past goalkeeper John Otieno at close range for his team’s deserved equalizer.

Two minutes later, Mwangi was on the mark again, this time rifling home from an assist by Yasin Sija.

Shark’s defence continued to be at sixes and sevens and in the 51st minute, Mahiga’s blockbuster missed the target by inches as Sharks’ sloppiness at the back was ruthlessly exposed.

Efforts by Sharks to make double substitutions by introducing Shariff Musa and Moses Shikanda for Paul Odhiambo bore no fruits and the worst came in the 75th minute when Timothy Ekhavi turned the ball in his own net in a bid to clear Kevin Maliachi’s shot.

At Kasarani Annex, Kenya Police also came from a goal down to edge stubborn City Stars 2-1.

Alvin Mangeni Mangeni was Police’s hero of the day when he netted a quick brace to cancel out Simba wa Nairobi’s lead courtesy of veteran Ezekiel Odera.

City Stars were on top of things early in the match but relaxed their tempo, allowing Mangeni to put the game to bed for Police with strikes in the 60th and 61st minutes respectively.

Today, AFC Leopards have their work cut out when they face FC Talanta at Nyayo Stadium as Posta Rangers welcome Wazito in Kasarani.

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