NAIROBI, Kenya, April 18 – Mathare United and Sofapaka both bagged a point after their barren draw at the Nyayo National Stadium on Sunday.
Sofapaka striker Abbas Akinyemi had a goal ruled out in the 72nd minute capping off an encounter that saw both sides spurn several scoring chances.
The defending champions took the game to Mathare as early as the second with Akinyemi firing the first salvo with a thunderous shot from an acute angle only for his effort to go wide.
Bob Mugalia made his presence felt with blazing runs down the near flank and almost got on the score sheet in the eighth minute after some good work from Akinyemi who does well to keep the ball in play to square it but the Congolese’s shot whistles harmlessly across goal.
The siege on Mathare’s goal continue with John Baraza and Humphrey Mieno coming close only to be denied by the inform Martin Musalia.
Mugalia squanders the best chance of the half when he latches onto a through ball from James Situma.
With no marker in sight, he decided to square the ball for the onrushing Akinyemi but the ball rolled out for a goal kick.
Mathare did launch some raids on Sofapaka territory with Anthony Nyagah and Jaffer Gichuki featuring prominently.
Their first real chance came in the 28th minute from a corner when David Nzomo rose above everyone else in the Sofapaka box to head goal wards but his shot his effort sails over the bar.
There was drama soon after when Mathare caught their opponents on the counter and Thomas Wanyama was lucky to escape without a booking after fouling Nyagah who was through on goal outside the box.
Sam Ssimbwa’s side continued to dominate possession towards the end of the half and were almost rewarded by another cracking shot from Mugalia but Musalia was up to the task again.
The second half was punctuated by both sides probing each other with the flash point coming in the 70th minute with a mad scramble in the Sofapaka penalty area.
Sofapaka keeper Wilson Obungu slipped as he made a save only for the ball to come loose but he managed to regather with Nzomo bearing down on him.
In Sunday’s other matches, Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) beat Sony Sugar 1-0 courtesy of Ezekiel Odera who scored in the 14th minute, Thika United drew one all with Ulinzi while it was the same result between AFC Leopards and Nairobi City Stars.