NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 12 – Yema Mwana’s fourth minute goal was all Bandari FC needed to beat Tusker FC at the Ruaraka Complex on Sunday evening and cement their hold on second spot in the Kenyan Premier League standings.
The victory was sweet revenge for the Mombasa based club with Tusker having beaten them in both their meetings this season, 2-0 in the first leg in Mombasa and 2-1 in the Football Kenya Federation Shield third round.
Fresh from their hugely morale boosting victory over league leaders Gor Mahia on Tuesday, Bandari had a perfect start hitting the target in the third minute of the game when Yema Mwana pounced on a poorly defended ball from a corner, shooting low pastPatrick Matasi in the Tusker FC goal.
The goal stunned the hosts who were coming into the game on the back of four wins in their last five games and they took on the task of trying to get back level.
They thought to have done just that after 18 minutes but David Juma’s goal off a Robert Achema cross from the right but the goal was ruled out with the second assistant’s flag up for offside.
Almost immediately, Peter Nzuki had an effort with a volley after controlling the ball well with his chest, but the rifling effort went straight to Faruk Shikhalo’s arms.
Tusker kept pressing looking for the equalizer and new boy John Kamau thought his header was headed inside the net after beating Shikhalo to a Lloyd Wahome cross, but the ball was cleared off the line by Nicholas Mejja.
Achema had a clean effort at goal in the 32nd minute when a well weighted ball from David Gateri found him isolated on the right, taking cool control of the ball but his left foot effort went inches off target.
A minute to the break, Achema exchanged passes with Timothy Otieno with the latter being released into the box, but he had a poor first touch, the ball rolling wide.
In the second half, Bandari came back stronger looking to get a second goal that would breathe some comfort into their chase.
Abdallah Hassan had two chances back to back. His first effort was a shot from the right after quickly breaking off his markers, keeper Matasi making a save. However, two of his teammates were in better scoring positions had he decided to square back the ball.
A minute later, he tried his luck with a shot from distance, but Matasi covered easily.
On the hour mark, Bandari should have been two up from a swiftly executed counter off a corner, William Wadri racing away from the chasing pack but his effort after sliding the ball past Matasi went against the bar, and the ball kindly bounced into the keeper’s arms.
Tusker thought they should have had a penalty two minutes on the turn but the referee waved play on after Wilberforce Lugogo seemed to have hacked down Otieno inside the box.