SportPesa Premier League title holders Tusker were held to a 1-1 draw by unfancied AS Port-Louis of Mauritius in their CAF Champions League preliminary round, first leg match at Moi International Sports Centre, in Nairobi on Saturday.
Ugandan left back Shaffiq Batambuze struck for the brewers in the first half only for Ivorian Ephraim Guikan to stun the home side with an equalizer in the second stanza.
Big-name players Humphrey Mieno, Allan Wanga and David Okello all featured in coach George Nsimbe’s starting lineup but could not influence the outcome of the match.
Nsimbe admitted that their performance was wanting but remained positive the brewers would turn the tables on the Mauritian side in the return leg in two weeks’ time.
“This is not the end. I still believe we can go out there and come out with something. The passing wasn’t right today, especially in the final third. Our plan was to attack them relentlessly. We conceded from a simple defensive mistake,” he said.
Batambuze broke the deadlock in the 26th minute of the match by curving a corner kick beautifully into the net.
The hosts, with practically nobody at the stands to cheer them on, lost their lead three minutes after the restart, as Guikan beat goalkeeper Okello with a fantastic strike to level matters.