By Fred Maingi in Nairobi
barren draw by Ulinzi Stars at the Nyayo National Stadium on Monday
night to dim their chances of retaining the title.
But yet again,the standards of officiating came to focus yet again
with Ulinzi Stars accusing referee Davies Omweno of failing to award
them a clear penalty in the 40th minute.
Tusker towering defender Joseph Shikokoti hacked down Ulinzi bulky
striker Wycliffe Ochomo but the referee waved play-on.
But it was Ulinzi Stars who ruled the airwaves with Ochomo,George
Otieno,Captain Stephen Ocholla and George Oyoo coming close to
scoring on several occasion.
Tusker had the better of chances in the first half but Ulinzi Stars
came back a more rejuvenated side in the second half.
Tusker’s Patrick Kagogo who was later injured and replaced by Joseph
Mbugi should have given his new coach Robert Matano a perfect gift
after 10 minutes but fired wide with an empty net smiling infront of
Tusker’s Joseph Emeka came close yet again with a clever lob in
the 37th minute but Ulinzi keeper Jacktone Odhiambo was quick to
counter the threat.
Speaking after the final whistle, Tusker new coach Robert Matano
said he was delighted with his players fighting spirit.He said
despite the draw, he was delighted with the one point.
Ulinzi Stars tactician Sammy Simiyu felt his side deserved to win
the match.’It was not our day.We lost quite a number of clear
chances.I feel sad to share the points with our hosts and yet we
dominated the ball and above all, we created many chances “ said
Tusker custodian Bonface Oluoch was named the man of the match
after making several acrobatic saves.He received a portable walka
television following his sterling performance between the posts.
The best chance for a goal was in the 85th minute. Stephen Waruru
worked his way on the left wing. A hard left footed drive was
seemingly headed in after Tusker keeper Oluoch had been beaten. But
surprisingly, George Otieno, in an attempt to connect to the ball got
it off the line and back into play to the shock of his team mates.
On 75 minutes, Peter pinches Opiyo sent a free kick from the right of
goal but Jacktone Odhiambo punched the ball back in play before a
Tusker player could get his head to it.
Tusker still maintain their second spot in the KPL standings with 40
points while Ulinzi Stars are fifth with 37 points.AFC Leopards remain
at the top of the log with 44 points from 22 matches.