NAIROBI, Kenya, November 12-The most exciting Kenya Premier League campaign ever comes to a thrilling finale this weekend when Ulinzi face Karuturi Sports at Afraha Stadium on Sunday while Gor Mahia take on Nairobi City Stars at City stadium.
After 29 rounds of high level competition and 232 matches in eight months, the destiny of the 2010 diadem will be determined in an afternoon of high drama that will undoubtedly captivate an entire nation.
There will be a half-hour build up to both matches live from specially set up studios in Nairobi as well as live crossings to both venues for a feel of the atmosphere within the stadiums before kick off.
The battle couldn’t be any closer, Ulinzi has a one point lead on Gor with 56 points and their goal difference is only one better than that of Kogalo.
A few weeks ago, Ulinzi seemed to have the title wrapped up with a six point lead then nerves crept in, in the dash towards the finishing line as the army men won only two of their last five matches losing once and drawing twice.
In contrast Gor have been on an unbelievable momentum, relentlessly hunting down Ulinzi, winning 11 matches and drawing four to get to within a point of the leaders.
So what are the permutations on Sunday?
An Ulinzi win over Karuturi Sports will hand them their fourth league crown. A draw will leave them hoping that Gor do not beat City Stars. For Gor to win the league, they have to beat City Stars and hope and pray that Ulinzi fail to beat Karuturi. If Gor draw and Ulinzi lose, the championship will be decided on goal difference.
Ulinzi will again rely on their strong points -teamwork and discipline- the army men have incredible team spirit and togetherness that has carried them thus far.
Their defence has been their strongest point having only conceded 16 goals while upfront goals have been coming as they boast the second highest number of goals scored this season.
Chester Okoyo, maybe Ulinzi’s top scorer with seven goals but the goal scoring duties are spread out within the team with five players having scored at least once, four scoring twice, two scoring three times while another two have scored four goals each.
They face a Karuturi side that is hard to beat but will be confident having completed the double over them last season. The first leg clash ended in a barren draw.
For Gor Mahia, a win would be an unbelievable achievement for a team that started the league in slow motion winning just once in their opening five matches. Crucially that win was against City Stars and they will hope that it’s a good omen for Sunday.
Filled with youthful zest and endeavour, Mighty Kogalo has been the neutral’s favourite all season with their intricate passing and movements, a joy to behold to lovers of the beautiful game.
Fans have also thrown their weight behind the team in a way reminiscent of the eighties, packing the stadium to the rafters in every game of the second half of the season, as possibilities of a first league title since 1995 became apparent.
They will be up against a City Stars side that always seem to do well against the big sides, having beaten Sofapaka and drawn with Tusker this season.
Revenge will also be on their minds after losing 1-0 in the first leg.