Reigning Kenyan Premier League (KPL) champions Gor Mahia FC beat Zoo FC 4-2 in an entertaining Round Two match played at the Green Stadium in Kericho on Thursday 15th February.
Gor Head Coach Dylan Kerr rested several key players ahead of their return CAF Champions League match against Leone Vegeteranios, notably Joash Onyango, Humphrey Mieno, Kevin Ade Omondi, Francis Kahata and Godfrey Walusimbi but still troubled Zoo at home. Jacques Tuyisenge could have handed Gor the lead as early as the in the 6th minute but his header went inches wide after a long throw by Wesley Onguso.
Zoo responded quickly, Danson Chetambe hard shot going wide after a quick reaction on the counter in the ninth minute. Cercidy Lumumba, who was starting in place of Mieno, won the ball at the center of the park in the 11th minute and released Tuyisenge with a quick pass on the right flank who in turn cut back for the onrushing Meddie Kagere who however mistimed his run with the goal at his mercy. Joachim Oluoch did well few minutes later, clearing off Bernard Odhiambo’s hard shot after another quick transition by Zoo. Chetambe missed another glorious opportunity to give Zoo the lead in the 21st minute, finding himself with only Shaban Odhoji to beat but he curved his shot too wide.
Both teams continued to attack in search of the elusive first goal. Ondiek again shot wide at the hour’s mark after a very good pass from the impressive Boniface Omondi but it didn’t take long before Gor Mahia got the opener. Cercidy Okeyo found Boniface Omondi with a long pass on the right flank, the latter doing well to release Tuyisenge who just had to tap in for the first goal of the match in the 32nd minute.
The second half resumed with George Odhiambo replacing the injured Jacques Tuyisenge. Boniface Omondi made it 2-0 with a simple tap in after Kagere had done all the spade work. Zoo responded swiftly, captain Johnstone Ligare Waweru heading in powerfully after a good cross from Isaac Kipyegon.
Zoo introduced Kepha Ondati for Danson Chetambe in the 65th minute and Bernard Odhiambo for Derrick Amani. Gor Mahia brought in Samuel Onyango for Cercidy Lumumba. Joachim Oluoch made it 3-1 with a powerful shot in the 70th minute, capitalizing on a rebound after Harun Shakava’s hard shot from inside the box hit the bar. Sammy Onyango scored the fourth for Gor with a volley from inside the box but the drama was far from over as Nicholas Kipkirui found the Gor Mahia backline napping and slotted in easily to make it 4-2 in the 75th minute. Innocent Wafula replaced Boniface Omondi in the 88th minute as Gor Mahia held on for the crucial three points and climb to the summit of the 2018 Kenyan Premier League table with six points from two matches.