NAIROBI, Kenya, July 30 – Enock Agwanda struck a beautiful volley before Meddie Kagere’s header as Gor Mahia beat second tier side Nairobi Stima 2-0 to secure their place in the GOtv Shield round of 16 at the Nyayo National Stadium on Saturday.
Agwanda, better known by his fans as ‘Jowi’ lit up the stadium with a fine long range drive just two minutes into the second half, beating former teammate Gor keeper Joel Bataro into the far top left corner.
Late into the second half, substitute Kagere nodded home in the 86th minute to seal the win that put the 2012 GOtv Shield champions on track to reclaim the domestic cup.
Stima showed an impressive display in the opening half to deny Gor who didn’t have a single shot on target as the visitors had one strike towards goal that was contained by skipper Jerim Onyango.
The effect of new signing midfielder Crispin Odula, who made the much awaited K’Ogalo debut, was not felt as Stima, coached by former Harambee Stars defender Ibrahim Shikanda did well to shut down the KPL champions.
Onyango, who was one of the seven changes made by head coach Jose Macelo, was forced to stretch wide in the early stages of the match when Yema Mwana had a good run, going past three Gor defenders but he went for the shot too early to see his effort go inches wide on the left corner of the post.
The visitors had settled quickest into the game as former Gor defender Ivan Anguyo went close in the 42nd minute when he found the tightest angle to shoot but his feeble shot didn’t trouble Onyango at goal.
On the stroke of half-time Agwanda missed a glorious opportunity to send his side ahead when he failed to chest a George ‘Blackberry’ Odhiambo pass to see Stima defender Anthony Odinga deny him a chance to shoot as Bataro easily collected the ball.
Gradually, K’Ogalo started to move through the gears in the last period and it was Agwanda who showed a character of champion when he took advantage of a miscue from Stima center-back Duncan Ochieng to volley home the opener.
The stunner of a goal did not only arouse the Green Army, but saw Agwanda receive cheers from the substitutes bench accompanied by a standing ovation from left-back Erick ‘Marcelo’ Ouma.
The goal calmed the tempo of the game as Gor solidified the midfield after Francis Kahata came on for ineffective Odula.
Also having a bad day in office was 2014 KPL Player of the year Jacob Keli who was hauled off for Baron Oketch while Meddie Kagere was brought on for goal scorer Agwanda.
The changes paid off in the late stages of the game as Kahata found Kagere with a pin point cross to see the Ugandan-born Rwandan freely head past Bataro for the win.
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