NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 10 – Defending champions Tusker FC succumbed to a 2-0 defeat away to Sony Sugar as AFC Leopards beat hosts Zoo Kericho 3-1 in the Kenyan Premier League matches played on Sunday.
In Narok, high flying Sofapaka thrashed visitors Chemelil Sugar 4-1 in a match that the Sugar Millers finished with 10 men. Ugandan Umaru Kasumba scored a hat-trick while Ezekiel Okare competed the rout.
The win for Batoto ba Mungu saw them sit second with 41 points, six points behind leaders and record 15-time champions Gor Mahia who have a match in hand.
For AFC Leopards despite the win, they lag behind in 13th place with 27 points as head coach Robert Matano continues to surge forward with hopes of achieving his top five target.
Tusker on the other hand dipped to ninth in the 18 team log with 30 points, hence facing an uphill task of defending their title because they are 17 points adrift of Gor Mahia.
-Classic AFC Leopards-
At the Kericho Green Stadium, Matano guided AFC Leopards to a crucial win to continue his good run since taking charge.
With the visitors controlling possession from the whistle, Ray Omondi broke the deadlock for Leopards six minutes after kick-off, making good use of a well delivered corner from Marcelus Ingotsi.
The pressure could have seen Ingwe double the scores but Zoo custodian Samwel Koko was alert to punch over Samuel Ndung’u’s long range cracker in the 10th minute.
The scores could have read 3-0 inside 20 minutes had defender Robinson Kamura converted two free-kicks at the edge of the box as the heavens opened.
However, Omondi did do wonders to double the scores and grab his brace at the half hour mark to put Ingwe at the steering wheel.
The second half was even better for Leopards with Vincent Oburu netting his debut league goal from an Ingotsi assist in the 55th minute to send his side 3-0 up.
Zoo’s effort to pull one back was denied by the post in the 71st minute from a well delivered free-kick.
Eventually the hosts managed to find the consolation thanks to Nicholas Kipkirui’s strike.
-Tusker title defense blow-
At the Green Stadium in Awendo, Tusker FC’s hopes of retaining the KPL title were dimmed after finding the going tough.
Returning from a lengthy lay off, former Nairobi City Stars forward George Abege grabbed the headlines after displaying a man of the match performance, scoring a brace.
Abege opened the scoring after seven minutes of play when he picked a fine pass from Benjamin Mosha from the right to beat Tusker shot-stopper Duncan Ochieng one-on-one.
Sony head coach Salim Babu bossed the game thereafter until Abege doubled the lead from a rebound as Duncan Ochieng failed to deal with a powerful cross from Amos Asembeka.