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AFC beats Nairobi Stima to lift off dark cloud

AFC Leopards Fans try to push their team on during the 1-1 draw with Zoo Kericho at the Kenyatta Stadium in Machakos on May 15, 2017. PHOTO/ Raymond Makhaya

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 8- First half goals from new signing Aziz Okaka and defender Joshua Mawira saw AFC Leopards lift off their dark cloud, beating Nairobi Stima 2-0 at the Mumias Complex to progress to the third round of the GOtv Shield.

Ingwe, winners of the Shield in 2013, were under pressure to register a win, coming off a poor league record of eight winless matches and playing at their traditional home ground, the blessing for victory was never too far away.

Stand-in coach Tom Juma, who was handling his last match before the arrival of Robert Matano next week, handed a first team debut to Burundian striker Alex Kitenge while other new boys Keziron Kizito, Okaka and Victor Majid started.

Okaka, signed in June by the 13-time Kenyan Premier League champions showed just why Ingwe went for his signature, giving the side the lead inside the first three minutes, slotting past the keeper after being picked out by a Dennis Sikhayi.

Eight minutes later, Nairobi Stima who had previously conceded only two goals in 14 matches found themselves conceding the same number in 11 minutes when Mawira rose high inside the box to power home from a Kizito corner.

In the second half, Stima upped their attacking game, but Leopards managed to hold them off and should have had a goal of their own but Vincent Oburu’s shot on the hour mark came off the upright.

Elsewhere, 2014 champions Sofapaka eased into the next round with a 1-0 win over Western Stima at the Kenyatta Stadium in Machakos.

Hillary Echesa scored the all important goal for Batoto ba Mungu connecting home a Meshack Karani cross.

In the early kick off, Gambian striker Ebrimah Sanneh scored his second goal in as many matches as Kariobangi Sharks went through with a 2-0 win over Kenpoly.

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GOtv Shield Round of 32 results and fixtures (Kick off 3 p.m. unless stated)

Saturday: Zetech v Kakamega Homeboyz, AFC Leopards 2 Nairobi Stima 0 (Mumias Complex), Mwatate United 0 Butterfly FC 2 (Wundanyi Stadium, Voi), Kenpoly 0 Kariobangi Sharks 2, Nakumatt 0 (8) Modern Coast 0 (7) (Kenyatta Stadium, Machakos), Ulinzi Stars 0 Sony Sugar 1 (Afraha Stadium), Coast Stima v Nzoia Sugar (Mbaraki Complex), Karatina Homeboyz v GFE 105, Sofapaka 1 Western Stima (Thika Sub-0 County Stadium).

Sunday: Young Divers v Eldoret Youth (Mbaraki Complex), Wazito v KCB (2 p.m.), Ushuru v Vihiga United (Camp Toyoyo 4 p.m.), Bidco FC v Rainforest (2 p.m.), Gor Mahia v Bandari, (Thika Sub County Stadium 4 p.m.), Taqwa v Savannah (2 p.m.), Tusker v Palos (Kinoru Stadium Meru 4 p.m.).

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