Kenya: Tusker Stage Comeback to Sink Sofapaka

Timothy Otieno and David Juma struck a goal apiece in a span of two minutes as Tusker staged a stunning comeback to sink bogey side Sofapaka 2-1 in their rescheduled SportPesa Premier League (SPL) clash at Ruaraka grounds on Monday.

Kevin Kimani fired Sofapaka ahead in the 38th minute but Otieno converted a 40th minute penalty to draw the Brewers level before the former Gor Mahia man turned provider for David Juma's match winner two minutes later.

The match had been rained off on Sunday after only 17 minutes forcing centre referee Alex Ondima to halt the proceedings as both players retreated to their respective dressing rooms for cover with hailstorms pounding the venue.

After 22 minutes of heavy downpour, the referees returned to the already waterlogged pitch to assess the situation, before declaring it unplayable.


And during the replay on Monday morning, Tusker outwitted the title-chasing Batoto ba Mungu, in only their third victory ever over Sofapaka in a decade.

Victory for Tusker, their first against the 2009 champions since May 2016, sends them to eighth with 33 points, seven adrift of second-placed Sofapaka after 24 rounds.

"We had prepared well for this game the whole week knowing we lost heavily in the first leg," said Tusker coach Robert Matano after the game.

Matano, who led Sofapaka to their only league title on their debut season in the top flight in 2009, added: "It was a tough match but we managed to contain the game, the three points will help us keep working hard."

His opposite number John Baraza was left searching for answers after suffering their second defeat in a row, following their 2-0 loss to Sony Sugar in their previous league tie.

"We slipped up again but we continue working hard to return to our winning ways, although, today the referee failed to control the game with a lot of stoppages not advantageous to both sides."

Both teams retained the same squads that had started on Sunday with Patrick Matasi starting in Tusker goal as Lloyd Wahome captained the side.

Otieno, who partnered David Juma upfront, saw his header from a Peter Nzuki corner picked by Sofapaka goalkeeper Mathias Kigonya in the fourth minute.

Matasi was called into action in the 18th minute, keeping out Elli Asieche's corner kick as both teams launched frequent attacks.

Justine Omary's header hit the roof of the net from another Nzuki corner a minute before the half hour mark before Collins Shivachi fouled Kevin Kimani 25 yards out on the left wing.

Asieche took responsibility to float the ball into the box that an unmarked Kimani headed home from inside the area. The dust had not settled before Tusker drew level via Otieno's penalty awarded after a handball in the box.

Two minutes later, Sofapaka lost possession in midfield with Otieno latching onto the loose ball to put through Juma who unleashed a low drive to the far post with Kigonya well beaten.

Tusker, who face Batoto ba Mungu in the SportPesa Shield quarterfinal, next visit Kakamega Homeboyz while Sofapaka host Ulinzi Stars.


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Publish date : 2018-07-31 08:21:28
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