Posta Rangers dispatch Sofapaka as new coach gets rude welcome

By Rodgers Eshitemi: Saturday, August 31st 2019 at 16:30 GMT +3 | Football
Kenyan Premier League side Posta Rangers coach Sammy 'Pamzo' Omollo during a KPL match against Sofapaka at Narok Stadium on August 26 [Courtesy]

Posta Rangers gave Angolan-Portuguese coach Divaldo Alves a rude welcome to the Kenyan Premier League with a 2-1 win over Sofapaka in Narok, as Kariobangi Sharks and Western Stima settled for a 2-2 draw in yesterday’s opening match of the season at Kenyatta Stadium, Machakos.

Gor Mahia begin their title defence bid against Tusker in Kisumu today at 4.15pm, as AFC Leopards face a tricky trip to Kakamega Homeboyz’s turf in their season opener tomorrow.

The Kisumu fixture, which is the highlight of the weekend, will be preceded by an early kick-off match between newcomers Kisumu All-Stars and Ulinzi Stars at 2 pm.

Last year’s runners-up and domestic cup winners Bandari, start with an away game to Mathare United at Ruaraka, while fancied Wazito face-off with Nzoia Sugar in Machakos in their season opener to mark their return to topflight football.

At Narok, the mailmen made a perfect start to the season after putting in a spirited second-half comeback.

“That’s a great performance from the boys. We conceded in the first half, but the boys didn’t give up, they showed resilience and had a winning mentality in the second half. This victory has given us a lot of confidence heading into the next match,” Rangers coach Sammy Pamzo Omollo, who recently returned to the club, told Standard Sports.

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Sofapaka, popularly known as Batoto Ba Mungu, took the lead in the 27th minute through Eli Asieche’s penalty kick after defender Suleiman Ngotho brought down his opponent in the box. But experienced midfielder Georson Likono drew level for the Sammy Omollo’s men one minute into the second half with a powerful effort on the edge of the box.

Former Gor Mahia striker Eliud Lokuwam then volleyed home a cross from the right to open his goal account at Rangers and secure the maximum points for his new club.

In Machakos, former player of the year and golden boot winner Eric Kapaito was on target as Kariobangi Sharks shared the spoils with Western Stima in their season opener.

Kapaito cancelled out Kennedy Otieno’s opener on the half-hour mark before new signing Patrick Otieno gave Sharks the lead eight minutes after the break. However, veteran goalkeeper Samuel Abawa denied Sharks the victory with a last gasp penalty kick.

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