NAIROBI, Kenya, February 26- Former champions AFC Leopards shot to the top of the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) after a 2-0 victory over promoted Oserian as early leaders Sony Sugar fell 1-0 to Sofapaka.
Allan Wanga netted the opener in the 22nd minute before substitute Mike Baraza made the points safe in the 77th minute to ensure that Ingwe will stay top for at least a week.
They lead the log on goal difference from Sofapaka, the 2009 champions, who halted the storming start to the season by Sony Sugar who won their opening two fixtures.
The 2010 champions Ulinzi Stars led at Thika Stadium only for hosts Thika United to rally to a 2-2 draw as Nairobi City Stars squandered numerous scoring chances as visiting Karuturi Sports escaped with a barren draw at Nyayo National Stadium.
AFC Leopards 2 Oserian 0
When AFC Leopards made the breakthrough with Allan Wanga’s stylish header in the 22nd minute it was confirmation of the edge they had over Oserian in spirited play.
Wanga and hyperactive Ugandan pace-man Jimmy Bageya had kept the attacking pressure on the Oserian defence and most affected was goalie Enock Obong’o.
When a corner from the right was eventually saved by the Oserian defence, and booted to the midfield, Charles Okwemba made a lightning counter on the right flank, brilliantly dribbling past two defenders, both of whom fouled him.
Salim Khamis swung the resultant free kick from 35 yards and Wanga, unmarked in the six-yard box, rose above everyone to head the ball past a hapless Obong’o.
Oserian refused to lie down and Wanga, the striker who returned from a troubled spell in Azerbaijan, missed further chances in the 50th and twice in the 57th minutes to extend the lead.
The flowermen’s best chance fell to replacement Tyrus Ojuki, five minutes after coming on in the 61st. He approached the box from the left and with clear space he could only direct his left foot shot to the side netting.
Leopards were still very dangerous and confident on the ball and the question was why they only had a 1-0 lead and their Dutch coach brought on Baraza just after his side conceded.
The veteran sealed the points when he side stepped a neat finish past Obong’o after receiving the ball from Bageya.
Nairobi City Stars 0 Karuturi Sports 0
City Stars’ Ugandan striker, Dan Sserunkuma missed a truck load of opportunities in this scrappy match characterised by lack of purpose from both teams in a match that deservedly ended goalless.
Karuturi keeper, Noah Ayuko lacked command in goal but still stopped Sserunkuma’s goal-bound shot and George Mwangi’s re-bound, in the last action of the match.
Jacob Omondi, Mohammed Mwachiponi and Allan Otindo, the Karuturi strike force did little justice to midfielder Kennedy Oduor who did all he could to provide good possession.
Thika United 2 Ulinzi 2
Evans Amuoka, after four minutes and Wycliffe Ochomo in the 22nd had visiting Ulinzi racing to a 2-0 lead at the Thika Municipal Stadium but the deposed champions left with a point after Kepha Aswani hit back in the 24th minute and Francis Kahata levelled in 75th minute for Thika United.