NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 27 – Clifford Omondi struck the lone goal in the 37th minute as Chemelil Sugar beat Thika United 1-0 at the Thika Sub County Stadium on Thursday afternoon to officially relegate their hosts as well as Wazito FC from the Kenyan Premier League (KPL).
The result took Chemelil to 35 points meaning bottom side Thika who are on 23 and Wazito who are on 28 cannot mathematically bridge the difference between them and 16th spot and therefore earn the automatic relegation axe.
Thika United merely survived the axe last season after beating Ushuru FC 1-0 in the relegation and promotion play-off, but their lack after flirting with the chop for the last two seasons seems to have run out.
Nonetheless, Chemelil still remains in danger as the 16th spot they occupy is not a safe zone. If they finish in that slot, they will have to face the third placed team from the National Super League (NSL) in the relegation and promotion play-off.
With two rounds of matches remaining, seven teams are in danger of slipping to the 16th spot hole. Sony Sugar (10), Zoo Kericho (11), Nzoia Sugar (12) Vihiga United (13), Posta Rangers (14) and Nakumatt (15) are all still mathematically within chop range.
Sony, Zoo, Nzoia, Vihiga and Posta Rangers will however save themselves with a point in their next matches. Nakumatt who are on 36 points, one behind Chemelil will need to gather fight and win both their remaining games to assure themselves of safety.
Nakumatt faces Sofapaka and Vihiga United in their final two games of the season while Chemelil has a home tie against Vihiga United and an away trip against Kariobangi Sharks for their final game of the season.