How Gor Mahia were frustrated by Homeboyz at Bukhungu Stadium

By Rodgers Eshitemi: Saturday, April 20th 2019 at 00:00 GMT +3 | Football
Gor Mahia and Nasr Athletic Hussein Dey from Algeria battle for ball possession during their CAF Confederation cup group D match at Kasarani Stadium on Sunday 24/02/19. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

Gor Mahia threw away a first half lead to draw 1-1 with a resilient Kakamega Homeboyz in yesterday’s SportPesa Premier League match, at Bukhungu Stadium.

The record Kenyan champions thought they had redeemed themselves from a humiliating 7-1 (on aggregate) CAF Confederation Cup quarter-finals loss to Morocco’s RS Berkane with Nicholas Kipkirui’s first half opener only for the on-form Allan Wanga to break the hearts of K’Ogalo’s faithful with a last gasp equaliser.

Despite the draw, Gor, who have four games in hand, moved back on top of the table due to a better goal difference after going level on points with the duo of Sofapaka and Bandari (45).

Homeboyz have also returned to the fourth spot on 38 points with Tusker and Mathare. Hassan Oktay’s men will host Ulinzi Stars in Kisumu tomorrow.

Meanwhile, Bungoma Superstars coach Ibrahim Shikanda has warned SportPesa Shield champions Kariobangi Sharks to brace for a tough quarterfinal match at Kenyatta Stadium, Machakos tomorrow.

The 4.15pm encounter will be preceded by an early kick off (2pm) match between SportPesa Premier League side KCB and Bidco United.

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The winners of the tournament whose final is slated for June 1 will represent the country in next year’s CAF Confederation Cup as well as pocket Sh 2 million in prize money.

Having eliminated both AFC Leopards (4-3) and Sofapaka (5-4) on penalties in the pre-quarters and last round of 32 respectively, the former Kenyan international is confident of continuing with their giant-killing run in the domestic cup.

“Of course playing against champions is never easy, but I believe we have come a long way and the boys know what this match means to them. It is a big challenge to us but I’m impressed with how motivated the boys are. We are well-prepared and ready for the task,” Shikanda said.”

“Nobody had given us a chance when the tournament started, but here we are now in the quarterfinals. We have so far proved our worthiness and I believe in my players’ ability. We have much respect for Sharks, but let them know it will not be a walk in the park. “

And with 2015 winners Bandari kicking off the quarterfinal stage with a tricky tie against visiting Western Stima at Mbaraki Sports Club today (3.15pm), coach Bernard Mwalala is not leaving anything to chance.

“There are no favourites in a cup competition. We’ve already witnessed a number of upsets in the tournament that’s why we are not leaving anything to chance.

“Western Stima is a very strong team, but our target is to reclaim this trophy,” Mwalala said.

SS Assad and Congo Boys will face-off in the first quarterfinal fixture at 1pm at the same venue.