NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 27 – Gor Mahia moved closer to their 18th Kenyan Premier League title after a 2-0 victory over Tusker FC at the Kenyatta Stadium in Machakos on Saturday evening pulled them seven points clear on top of the standings pending the matches lined up on Sunday.
First half goals from Jacques Tuyisenge and Samuel Onyango saw Gor take control of the game and not even a spirited second half performance from the brewers could change the result.
With the victory, Gor who rest on Sunday before playing Ulinzi Stars in Nakuru on Monday have gone to 55 points, seven ahead of second placed Sofapaka who have played a match more.
Batoto ba Mungu can reduce the gap on Sunday with victory against Mathare United at the same venue.
Meanwhile in other fixtures, Edwin Lavatsa stepped off the bench to score an 87th minute equalizer as Kakamega Homeboyz held KCB to a 1-1 draw while Nzoia Sugar picked up vital points to guarantee their survival winning 2-1 away to Chemelil Sugar.
Sony Sugar meanwhile beat Western Stima 2-0 in Kisumu while Kariobangi Sharks went for the ninth match without victory following a 1-1 draw with Posta Rangers.
But it was the late kick off in Machakos which had everyone glued, especially with the implications it had as much as the title chase is concerned.
Gor got into the steering wheel as early as the 16th minute when Tuyisenge broke the deadlock with a simple tap in from a Kenneth Muguna cross.
He had shown early signs of his goal poaching nature when within the opening two minutes, he tried out a volley from inside the box which was well collected by Tusker keeper Robert Mboya.
Onyango then made it 2-0 in the 31st minute when he hit the ball home on the second bite of the cherry after his initial shot off a Muguna cross from point blank was saved by Mboya, but he reacted well to pounce to the rebound and score.
Tusker had their chances and the closest fell on Boniface Muchiri whose stinging freekick from range was turned behind for a corner by Shabaan Odhoji with a one handed save.
In the second half, Tusker coach Robert Matano made changes to seal the holes used by Gor in the opening half. David Naftali and Noah Wafula came off in midfield and their places were taken up by Clyde Ssenaji and Peter Nzuki.
The changes seemed to have brought Tusker into some good playing sphere and they began to command the game better with good passing and movement, but the cutting edge when it mattered most, infront of goal, always lacked.
Two minutes after the restart, Muchiri was sent throygh by Jackson Macharia but his shot was always rising. Ten minutes later, Macharia who was pulling the strings in midfield put Sydney Ochieng through, but Odhoji was faster off his line to block the effort.
They had an even better chance on the hour mark when Muchiri delivered a good corner at the back post, but Justin Omary’s header unmarked sailed straight to Odhoji’s arms.
They thought they had a goal a minute later when Otieno controlled a shot from Macharia before nodding it over Odhoji but the ref whistled for offside. However replays showed the forward was well onside.
Tusker threw in everything at Gor, but couldn’t get the ball into the back of the net and Ochieng should have scored at least a consolation at the stroke of 90 minutes but he missed a sister off Hillary Wandera’s cross.