MACHAKOS, Kenya, Sep 2- Kariobangi Sharks progressed to their third successive Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Shield semi-final after beating Gor Mahia 4-2 on post match penalties at the Kenyatta Stadium in Machakos on Sunday evening.
The game was forced into penalties after a barren stalemate in regulation time and on spot kicks, Bernard Ondiek and Joachim Oluoch missed with Sharks’ only miss from 12 yards being midfielder Patillah Omotto.
It compounded what looks like a doomed week for Gor, the Kenyan champions having been also dumped out of the CAF Confederations Cup after losing 2-1 away to Algeria’s USM Alger.
Gor held on to survive a 0-0 result after 90 minutes with Sharks guilty of several missed chances.
On penalties, Gor’s fairy tale seemed to be developing well when Fredrick Odhiambo saved from Omotto. Francis Mustafa scored for Gor with pascal Ogweno replying scoring Sharks’ second spot kick.
Gor’s Ondiek however erased all that advantage skying his penalty over the bar. Sharks went on to score through Bolton Omwenga and Boniface Omondi sent Gad Mathews the wrong way to keep the scores tied at 2-2.
Keeper Mathews the turned to face his opposite number and he made no mistake, with Gor failing to keep the tempo with Oluoch striking his effort against the crossbar.
It was now left to Duke Abuya to finish off the job and the striker made no mistake, scoring to send Sharks to the semis.
In what has now turned out to be his signature this season, Gor Mahia head coach Dylan Kerr made changes to his squad, sticking to the same group of players that have been playing in the Shield while his first team was rested after only returning from their CAF Confederations Cup sojourn late in the week.
Fredrick Odhiambo retained his place in goal, Charles Momanyi started in defense while Ernest Wendo was also preferred in holding midfield, the rest of the team being changed.
On the balance of chances created, Sharks should have at least been two up by half time. Kerr’s face turned red in anger at his team’s poor defensive display and no sooner had the half time whictle blown than he marched down to the dressing room for some half time hair dryer.
Sharks had the first real chance after 12 minutes, Patillah Omotto’s looped ball from midfield landing on Harrison Mwenda’s path but the winger volleyed the effort wide with a clean path to goal ahead of him.
On the other end two minutes later, keeper Gad Mathew made a decisive touch diving from his line to palm Francis Mustafa’s cross away right infront of Bernard Ondiek’s head as he prepared to glance it into the net.
Nonetheless, Sharks continued dominating the chances and on the 20th minute, Mwenda was gifted with another chance when Duke Abuya’s cut back from the right found him at the edge of the box, but thw winger’s connection went over.
Sharks thought they had broken the deadlock in the 27th minute when Eric Kapaito tapped the ball home from close range after George Abege’s knock down, but his goal was ruled out for offside.
The visitors had two more chances towards the break, all going begging. Mwenda’s cross from the right destined for Abuya at the far post ended in disappointment as the striker failed to land a decisive touch with acres of space ahead of him.
Two minutes to the break, Kapaito saw his header go off the bar after nodding the ball beyond Fredrick Odhiambo in goal from an Abuya chip.