AFC Leopards fail Gor Mahia’s test

By Gilbert Wandera

Gor Mahia have the audacity to dream of clinching the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) title after stopping archrivals AFC Leopards 2-1 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani.

Gor have their chest in front in the final sprint to the championship after claiming maximum points against their opponents to go on top of the standings for the first time this season. However, this could change if Tusker beat Karuturi Sports in Naivasha today.

Ugandan import Dan Sserenkuma scored a double for Gor, drawing the first blood in the 14th minute after he finished off a Kevin Omondi move.

Jonas Nahimana failed to clear a loose ball in his danger zone allowing Kevin Omondi to beat him and Patrick Matasi had a hand on the final shot, but it hit the post and rebounded to have Ssrenkuma calmly slotted home.

The second goal arrived when Gor worked a short corner and the Ugandan arrowed at the roof of the net with a thunderbolt outside the 18-yard box in the 36th minute and Matasi could only watch from his position.

Leopards’ Mike Barasa scored the only goal in the 57th minute after taking advantage of a defensive lapse to hit his seventh of the season.

 Saturday’s match was a balanced affair with Gor staying supreme in the first half, but lacked the energy to take it to the end. At one point they resorted to time wasting tactics a situation that earned defender Ivan Anguyo and Victor Abondo cautions from referee Sylvester Kirwa.

Leopards had only one chance at goal in the entire first half when Allan Wanga drew a fine save from goalkeeper Jerim Onyango after 25 minutes. Gor on the other hand had at least a dozen chances and should have had a wider lead in the half.

It was a different Leopard’s side in the second half though. Ingwe showed more purpose and determination especially after the inclusion of Paul Were.

Even after Barasa’s goal, Leopards had two other clear chances to get at least a point from the match. Were missed from just outside the 18 yard with a curled free kick that Jerim Onyango just had his hand on for a fruitless corner. Then Martin Imbalambala watched in disbelief as his cross-shot went just wide.

Leopards seemed to be having internal problems at the technical bench following reports of sabotage and on Saturday only one assistant, Mickey Weche was allowed to sit with head coach Jan Koops on the bench.

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