Gor Mahia hit Bandari as KPL action resumes
Kenyan Premier League champions Gor Mahia on Thursday secured a 2-1 win against visiting Bandari at the City Stadium.
And the breathtaking atmosphere associated with the Kenyan Premier League was evident on the stands, a clear sign that local football fans have been hungry for football action in the top-tier league.
Rwandese Meddie Kagere scored his debut goal for K’Ogalo but it was cancelled out by Bandari’s Lawrence Kasadha 10 minutes later.
Then Ali Abondo restored Gor’s lead with a penalty in the 60th minute and the home team held on for victory.
Gor Mahia coach Frank Nuttall was sent off late in the match for dissent after he clashed with match officials over penalty claim.
“I think that we should have had at least two other penalties in the game and I expressed just as much to the referee and he chose to send me off. Generally the boys played well, we had several chances in the first and second half,” Nuttall said.
K’Ogalo went ahead through a 19th-minute goal from Kagere after the Rwandese was put through by Michael Olunga.
The 21-year-old Olunga had pounced on a cross from the left and fed Kagere who tapped the ball home past Bandari goalkeeper Wilson Oburu.
Kasadha however offered his team a glimmer of hope ten minutes later with a lovely rebound off Shaban Kenga’s well taken free-kick.
Gor then scored via a penalty converted by Abondo at the half hour-mark after Olunga had been fouled by Omar Abdulatif inside the box.
K’Ogalo had started the match on a high tempo and dominated the proceedings, with new signings Abouba Sibomana, Karim Nzigymana and Kagere standing out.
Kagere almost scored in the 16th minute after receiving an inviting cross from Sibomana, but with only the goalkeeper to beat, his diving header went wide.
Bandari’s first goal served to give them more confidence, and they were threatening in the last ten minutes of the second half, with David King’atua, Masoud Juma and George Abege testing Gor custodian Boniface Oluoch.
The second half was a fairly balanced affair, with Gor’s Olunga creating several chances but he lacked precision.
King’atua came close in the 50th minute when he outran his marker but the alert custodian Oluoch palmed out his shot at close range.
Juma, who enjoyed a wonderful evening, also had a one-on-one moment with the Gor Mahia goalkeeper but his hastily-taken shot went over the bar.