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Harambee Stars captain Olunga bags hat trick in Qatar

 Al-Duhail striker Michael Olunga [Courtesy]

Harambee Stars captain Michael Olunga scored his first hat-trick of the season on Wednesday night to guide his club Al Duhail to a 3-0 win over Qatar Sporting Club in the Qatar Stars League.

The former Gor Mahia forward had a first-half brace in the first half including a penalty before sealing his hat-trick feat in the final half.

The win took Al Duhail second in the Qatar Stars League with 13 points, two points behind Al Arabi.

This was Olunga's second consecutive match he was scoring in after a slow start to the 2022 season where Al Duhail has won four of the six matches already played.

Olunga scored one goal when Al Duhail dispatched leaders Al Arabi 3-0 on August 31 last month.

The reigning Qatar Stars League Golden Boot winner is now second in the top scorers' list with five goals, a goal behind Angolan Jacinto Muondo "Gelson" Dala who has scored six goals for third-placed Al-Wakrah.

Olunga has been Kenya's key man spearheading Harambee Star's attack for a number of years now.

The 27-year-old has already played all over the world. Locally, he started his rise at Tusker (2013), Thika United (2014) and Gor Mahia (2015) where he scored a combined 31 goals.

In 2016, he moved to Europe where he featured for Sweden side Djurgardens IF for a season before moving to Asia to play for Chinese side Guizhou Zhicheng in 2017.

Olunga made history as the first Kenyan player to play in the Spanish La Liga league in 2017 playing for a year in which he also scored a famous hat trick for the Catalonia-based club.

The Harambee Stars captain moved back to Asia in 2018, but this time to play for Kashiwa Reysol in Japan. It is in Japan that he exploded with 58 scored across two seasons.

On 24 November 2019, he scored eight goals for Kashiwa in a 13-1 victory over Kyoto Sanga. Olunga finished the season with 27 league goals as Kashiwa finished the J2 season as champions and won promotion to the first division.

Olunga finished as the top scorer in the 2020 Japanese J1 League with 28 goals, winning the Golden boot and the J-League 2020 MVP. He is the first African player to win the J-league MVP award.

In January 2021, Olunga moved to Qatar Stars League champions Al-Duhail on a three-seasons contract for a reported transfer fee of EUR6 million

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