NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 11- Ugandan coach Paul Nkata is determined to make history by being the first tactician to win the GOtv Shield back-to-back with two different teams after guiding Bandari to the third round of the tournament with a win against Gor Mahia over the weekend.
Nkata, who joined the Dockers at the beginning of the year, led Tusker to their first GOtv Shield title in 23 years last year and after beating Gor, a side that has won the most title in the GOtv Shield competition, Nkata is optimistic he can go on and win the title again.
“We can’t say much about that at the moment, but we are just taking one match at a time. It is a difficult tournament, but it is something that we can do. We have a good team and having beaten a side like Gor which is very strong, anything is possible,” Nkata pointed out.
Bandari had to endure a nervous penalty shoot-out session at the Thika Sub-County Stadium on Sunday with a winner found after nine strokes, the Dockers going off 6-5 winners.
In the round of 16 scheduled for July 23, they will face off with fellow Kenyan Premier League side Nakumatt FC who also had to endure the gamble of penalties before seeing off National Super League (NSL) side Modern Coast 7-6.
At the same time, defending champions Tusker FC have been handed what on paper looks like an easy route to the quarter finals, as they will face off third tier side Butterfly FC.
The Brewers were made to work hard before winning 1-0 against NSL side Palos FC at the Kinoru Stadium in Meru and as they plot their title defense, head coach George Nsimbe knows it is not an easy path.
“It was a very tough match against Palos and that just goes to show that if we want to win this tournament again we have to work very hard. I am pleased that we could win that match and now we forget about it and look at the next round,” Nsimbe told Capital Sport.
“Our target still remains to defend this title and we will work hard to ensure we do. We are not under pressure and I think that is why we are managing to get results. Hopefully we can continue that way.”
In other round of 16 pairings, 2014 champions Sofapaka will face off Kariobangi Sharks, a side that reached the quarter finals last year. Sofapaka were 1-0 winners over fellow KPL opposition Western Stima while Kariobangi Sharks saw off Nairobi Regional League side Kenpoly 2-0.
Batoto ba Mungu are looking to end a trophy drought that dates back to their win in the tournament three years ago, and head coach Sam Ssimbwa is overly confident with a re-jigged side, he will attain his target.
Meanwhile, Ulinzi Stars’ hopes of going one better than last season and winning the title went up in smoke after a 1-0 loss to Sony Sugar at home. Amos Asembeka scored against the soldiers for the second time in less than three weeks dumping them out.
Ulinzi head coach Benjamin Nyangweso was left ruing missed chances and he now shifts all his energies to the Kenyan Premier League title hunt.
Sony will now face fellow Sugar Belt side Nzoia Sugar in the round of 16.
GOtv Shield round of 16 fixtures:
Bandari v Nakumatt, Sony Sugar v Nzoia Sugar, Young Divers v Savannah, Sofapaka v Kariobangi Sharks, GFE 105 v Wazito, Bidco United v AFC Leopards, Kakamega Homeboyz v Vihiga United, Tusker FC v Butterfly.