NAIROBI, Kenya, October 28- Gor Mahia sent their passionate Green Army to raptures when they bottled champions Tusker FC in a capacity Kenyan Premier League encounter at a rocking Nairobi City Stadium on Sunday.
K’Ogalo can dare to dream of their first league title since 1995 after they took charge of the standings with 55 points after Ugandan Dan Sserunkuma netted the winner on 12 minutes meaning Gor will suceed the Brewers if they win their final two games against Muhoroni (away) and Thika United (home).
Tusker, who lost their first game since Robert Matano took over seven games ago, lost the initiative at the intimidating City Stadium as Gor fans, some who had travelled from the cities of Kisumu and Mombasa raised the decibel levels to almost toxic levels.
They trail K’Ogalo by a point level on 54 with third-placed AFC Leopards who had joined them at the summit on Saturday when they dismissed Oserian 3-1 in Naivasha to craft a finale to the season that has seen the leading trio take turns at the top.
Usually a bedrock of the side, Tusker keeper, Boniface Oluoch, proved to be the undoing of his side that was set-up to at least nick a point from the hostile cauldron when he let Sserunkuma’s shot squirm under his grip and roll agonisingly across the line.
That lapse ended being the difference at the end of the cagey match with his opposite number and Gor captain, Jerim Onyango, earning his corn by keeping out Patrick Kagogo before repelling the follow-up from Kenneth Wendo.
Oluoch kept out Sserunkuma six minutes from the breather before he fumbled a Victor Abondo’s delivery on 52 minutes after the resumption.
The party that spilled into the streets of Nairobi was finally set off when at the death when Onyango thwarted Peter Opiyo shortly before Nasoor Ndoka blew for full-time.
Elsewhere, Rangers whose last rites in the top flight were being prepared to be read stunned hosts Western Stima 3-2 to set themselves up for an unlikely escape.
Victories in their remaining fixtures against City Stars and fellow strugglers Oserian could see them pull off one of the most astonishing survival.
Former champions Ulinzi Stars and Thika shared the points in a 1-1 draw in Nakuru while the Chemelil Sugar will play Muhoroni on Monday after heavy rains saw the match that was still barren halted after 25 minutes.
GOR MAHIA – 1. Frederick Onyango (captain): 19. Solomon Nasio, 3. Christopher Wekesa, 18. Ivan Anguyo, 4. Donald Mosoti, 6. Anthony Akumu, 10. Victor Abondo, 20. Joseph Njuguna, 8. Dan Sserunkuma, 9. Edwin Lavatsa, 25. Moses Odhiambo
Reserves – 16. Ivoo Mapunda, Gk; 7. Juma Yusuf, 12. George Midenyo, 14. Kevin Omondi, 17. Nicholas Auma, 30. Moses Otieno, 15. David Owino
TUSKER – 1. Boniface Oluoch: 5. Jockins Atudo, 15. Humphrey Okoti, 26. David Ochieng’ , 18. Joseph Shikokoti (captain), 21. Frederick Onyango, 10. Dennis Mukaisi, 23. Peter Opiyo, 7. Kenneth Wendo, 11. Joseph Emeka, 19. Patrick Kagogo
Reserves – 16. George Opiyo, Gk; 25. Luke Ochieng’, 4. Joseph Mbugi, 13. Frederick Ojuang’, 8. Joshua Oyoo, 22. Maurice Odipo, 17. David Nyanzi