Gor hang on grimly for hard-fought win

Tusker's Jaffary Oyando (L) and team mate Njuguna battle with CCC of Gor Mahia during their premier league match at Moi International Sports Centre Kasarani /MOHAMMED AMIN.

What you need to know:

  • ‘K’Ogalo’ come from behind to upset former champions Tusker at Kasarani

Tusker FC’s Joseph Emeka scored his seventh goal to lead in the Kenyan Premier League scorer’s log, but could do little to salvage his side after they lost 2-1 against Gor Mahia on Sunday at Kasarani.

In Thika, Western Stima ran away with a point after they forced a 1-1 draw against Thika United.

Gor Mahia 2 Tusker 1

The Nigerian import, Emeka, put his side ahead with a thunderous strike after 17 minutes but Elisha Ochieno converted a 26th minute penalty after Noah Abich brought down Ibrahim Kitavi, for parity before Habil Otieno made sure the former heavyweights collected maximum points after he tapped home the decider in the 59th minute.

“It’s good that we have recovered from last week’s 1-0 loss to Agrochemicals. Bit by bit, we are getting there (at the top). I thank all our fans who have always been behind us in our 13 matches, no matter the outcome,” said Ochieng’.

Otieno, introduced for the final quarter hour with coach Gideon Ochieng’ desperate to break the deadlock, pounced after international Julius Owino flicked a superb through ball from the right wing into his path.

Until Otieno’s intervention, schoolboy George Odhiambo had Gor’s best chance with a curling 39th-minute effort which beat Tusker goalkeeper Boniface Oluoch but rebounded off the far post to safety.

It proved an inspired end to the match for Ochieng’ who also saw Dancun Owiti come close to crowning the team’s recovery with his goal, but it might have been different if his custodian, George Odhiambo had not pulled off an eighth-minute wonder-save.

Coming into the encounter on the back of five consecutive Kenyan Premier League wins, Tusker started well and when Jerry Santos crossed, Emeka looked certain to score only for Odhiambo to somehow palm his low shot over the bar.

“K’Ogalo” responded by almost taking the lead themselves in the 12th minute, Kitawi flicking the ball on to Owiti, who lashed a right-foot shot into the side-netting.

Ochieno sent a set-piece out wide to Owino, whose header flew over the bar before the brewers immediately responded with a chance of their own, Fredrick Ojwang’ wriggling clear but drilling a low shot straight at Odhiambo.

Tusker created the first chance of the second half when substitute, Simon Mburu’s neat through ball sent Nathan Mutenza scampering into the box but Francis Akango got back well to make a superb saving challenge.

Tusker were struggling to find a way through the resolute Gor rearguard with Jokins Atudo forced out wide chasing a John Njoroge through ball and Emeka failing to reach a high cross from Noah Abich.

The brewers almost made Gor pay on the hour when Oyando thundered a 25metre-shot that nearly got the best of Odhiambo, only for Owino to clear off the line.

Otieno followed shortly afterwards in place of Owiti and capped his introduction by finishing off the fine move which finally gave Gor the much needed win.

It might have got even better for the home side in the dying minutes with the impressive Odhiambo unleashing a powerful right-foot drive which flashed just wide of Oluoch’s right-hand post.

Thika Utd 1 Western Stima 1

Western Stima held Thika FC to a 1-1 draw at the Thika Municipal Council on Sunday.

Thika, who were missing two of their key players, Crispin Olando and Dennis Odhiambo wasted a lot of chances that came their way, especially in the last 20 minutes of the match.

It was Stima, who scored first, after four minutes, through Jacob Mugoya.

The home team had to wait until the 44th minute for an equalizer through a Juma Abdalla’s long drive.

Additional reporting by Lawrence Ongaro

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