NSL: Shabana scent promotion after bright start to the season
What you need to know:
- The Kisii based side, who were relegated from the top tier league in 2006, are unbeaten in eight matches and sit pretty at the top of the NSL log with 22 points
- Shabana's 3-1 win over Kajiado FC on Wednesday at Gusii Stadium saw them open a five-point lead at the top, a daylight ahead of Kibera Black Stars who will not be in action this weekend
- At Camp Toyoyo in Nairobi, hosts Darajani Gogo were held to a 0-0 draw by Mully Children Family (MCF)
Shabana are well on course for a return to the Football Kenya Federation Premier League after a bright start to the 2022/23 National Super League (NSL)season.
The Kisii based side, who were relegated from the top tier league in 2006, are unbeaten in eight matches and sit pretty at the top of the NSL log with 22 points.
Teams that finish first and second in the second tier league secure automatic slots to the topflight league while the team which finishes third plays in a promotion play-off with the club that is ranked third from bottom in the FKF-PL.
Shabana's 3-1 win over Kajiado FC on Wednesday at Gusii Stadium saw them open a five-point lead at the top, a daylight ahead of Kibera Black Stars who will not be in action this weekend.
Kibera Black Stars lie second on the log with 17 points, followed by Migori Youth on 13 points while Coastal Heroes and Murang’a Seal follow in that order.
Long serving Shabana official, Stephen Kiama attributed their 3-1 win to fans who attended the match in large numbers.
Coach Sammy Okoth was full of praise for his charges following the win, and urged them to work harder on the pitch in the remaining fixtures to keep their dream of qualifying for the top league next season alive.
At Camp Toyoyo in Nairobi, hosts Darajani Gogo were held to a 0-0 draw by Mully Children Family (MCF).
APS Bomet relegated
Meanwhile, APS Bomet have been suspended and relegated from NSL after missing three consecutive matches.
The South Rift based outfit failed to honour fixtures against Naivas FC, Fortune Sacco and Costal Heroes scheduled for January 7, January 11 and January 16 respectively.
A letter from FKF dated January 25, 2023, stated: “In view of the above, we note that your team has to date failed to play three (3) matches and has failed to provide any acceptable written explanation for the failure(s).”
The letter signed by FKF CEO Barry Otieno further said, "APS Bomet have now been suspended from the 20222/2023 FKF National Super League and relegated to the 2023/2024 Division One League as provided for by Rule 3.1.12 of the FKF rules and regulations governing Kenyan football (2019) which states that 'Any club in a league format that does not turn up for three (3) fixtures in a season and their explanation, under Rule 3.1.7 is accepted in all the three (3) incidences to the FKF National League and Competition Committee, shall be suspended for the rest of the season, shall be relegated to a lower league for the next season and may face others disciplinary action.'"
APS Bomet have been punished while awaiting the outcome of their case challenging Football Kenya Federation's decision to nullify the 2021/22 football season.
Bomet, who want to be promoted to the FKF-PL after finishing top in the National Super League (NSL) last season, filed the case alongside last year’s Division One champions, Kona Rangers, who also feel aggrieved after being denied the chance to join the second-tier league.
Other clubs enjoined in the case as interested parties include Dimba Patriots, Mayenje Santos among others.
The National Super League has reached Round Eight, but Bomet have not honoured any of their matches pending the Sports Dispute Tribunal ruling.
Fortune Sacco, who finished second in the 2021/22 NSL, also want to be promoted to the Kenyan Premier League, after earning the automatic slot.