Kothbiro: Korogez beat Ruaraka All Stars to book semis slot
Korogez from Gikomba market sailed through to the Kothbiro tournament’s semi-finals after beating perennials Ruaraka All Stars (from Ruaraka) 4-2 in a fan-packed match that ended in penalty shoot-outs at the signature Umeme Grounds in Ziwani.
Clement Reis gave the tournament’s debutants, their opener in the 12th minute before Erick Kipkurui of Ruaraka All Stars leveled the score in the 24th minute.
Ruaraka’s 17-year-old Kalou Mani aka Iniesta netted the second goal for Ruaraka All Stars in the 27th minute.
Ruaraka’s celebration was however short-lived after Korogez’ Issa Charo equalized in the 35th minute ending the first half with a 2-2 draw.
The entertaining second half would end in a 3-3 draw after Ruaraka’s Erick Kipkirui scored his second goal in the 65th minute, before Wellingtone Ochieng sailed through Ruaraka’s shaky defense and leveled for the Mitumba traders in the 86th minute.
Reacting to the results, Korogez’ Coach Polosa Odera expressed excitement about the win especially due to the fact that this is their debut in the tournament.
“We are happy about the win. We conceded two goals because of laxity but then chased the ball and equalized,” Polosa said.
On his part Ruaraka All Stars Coach Cyril Peter Otieno cited laxity for their loss.
“We played a great game. We lost many chances but also took advantage of the ones we had and scored three goals. We hope to work on our defense in the next match. We lost out of our own naivety,” Otieno said.
Earlier on, Eastleigh South from Eastleigh beat Kingstone FC 4-5 on penalty kicks after sharing spoils with a 1-1 draw in a gruesome quarter-final encounter.
Julius Kasera scored for Eastleigh South while Julius Muhia scored for Kingstone FC during regular time.
Kothbiro organizer Paul Ojenge has appealed for more funds to help them raise the prize money and pay tournament officials.
Ojenge has appreciated SportPesa CEO Ronald Karauri for paying part of the money the betting company wed the tournament.
“We are still appealing for more organizers to come through and help us raise the prize money. The tournament officials like referees also need to be paid their dues for the smooth running of the finals,” Polosa stated.
The semi-finals will be played on Saturday, January 28, 2023, while the finals will be played on February 4.