NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 4 – Harambee Stars have missed out on yet another opportunity to play in the African Nations Championship (CHAN) after suffering a 4-1 post match penalties loss to Tanzania following a 0-0 draw in the return leg at the Kasarani Stadium on Sunday evening.
The two teams played to a similar result in Tanzania last weekend and the aggregate scores meant penalties would decide who proceeds to the next round.
Joash Onyango struck his penalty over the bar while Michael Kibwage saw his effort saved as the Tanzanians triumphed in Nairobi.
Erasto Nyoni, Paulo Godfrey, Gadiel Michael and Salum Hamis each put one past John Oyemba in Stars’ goal while Kenya’s only penalty that found the back of the net was from Clifton Miheso.
Tanzania now go through to the second round where they will face off with Sudan.
It was yet another day when head coach Sebastien Migne’s tactics hit a brick wall, his choice of striker upfront Sidney Lokale failing to show anything worth smiling about while last season’s Kenyan Premier League top scorer Enosh Ochieng watched from the bench.
Boniface Muchiri, called up to spark a misfiring striking line for the return leg also watched the entire encounter on the bench despite his goal scoring prowess seeing him finish as Tusker’s top scorer with 12 to his name.
-Shambi in, Shambi out
Migne subbed in Ulinzi Stars midfielder Ibrahim Shambi in the 28th minute after Philemon Otieno was injured, but substituted him out 12 minutes in the second half for David Owino.
The tactician’s change was curious as he brought on Ulinzi Stars midfielder Ibrahim Shambi to play on the right side of defense while natural defender, Bernard Ochieng who played in the same position in the first leg in Dar es Salaam remained on the bench.
Three horrible shots, one off a freekick summarized Kenya’s first half performance. Not that Tanzania were any better, but it was a half to forget for Migne and his charges.
Migne had made two changes from the team that played in Tanzania, Philemon coming on while Sidney Lokale was also started with Musa Masika not even being in thematch day 18.
None of the two teams managed a single shot on target. Tanzania had an effort at goal after six minutes, Iddi Selemani’s effort at goal from range going over.
Frank Domayo had an even better chance in the 18th minute when Hassan Dilunga’s cross from the right found him rushing in at the edge of the six yard box, but his technique on the volley was awry, the ball going over.
Kenya’s only sniffs at goal were off two efforts from distance by Kenneth Muguna and Dennis Odhiambo both going over while Clifton Miheso followed the same path with a freekick from good scoring range.
Stars had a frantic start to the second half and had a chance to score barely a minute in when a quickly taken throw in found Miheso who cut back for Whyvonne Isuza, but his shot hit the side netting.
With Shambi out, Samuel Onyango was deployed as a wingback while Owino played as a winger. The diminutive Mathare United man caused lots of trouble for the Tanzanian backline with his runs and energy.
-Kaseja off his line
With 15 minutes left, Stars had another great chance when Lokale cut in a cross from the right but both Isuza and Duke Abuya missed with Juma Kaseja off his line.
Migne looked on to the KPL top scorer Ochieng to spark his misfiring forward line calling him in for Lokale. But still there was no way past the Tanzanian backline.
In fact, it was Tanzania who almost grabbed victory at the death when a mistake from Oyemba off his line gifted John Bocco of the ball, but the experienced striker hit the ball over the bar with only Joash Onyango, Kenya’s best player of the evening on the line.