NAIROBI, Kenya, May 23 – A flawless first half performance saw KCB beat Bandari 3-0 at the Utalii Complex on Sunday to storm top of the BetKing Premier League standings, one point ahead of Tusker who drop off the summit for the first time in almost four months.
David Simiyu and defender Harun ‘Mwalimu’ Thomas scored the goals for the bankers in the opening half with Derrick Otanga sealing the win with five minutes left as they went to 36 points, one ahead of the brewers who were held to a 1-1 draw by Wazito FC on Friday.
Bandari were shambolic in the opening half and the bankers deservedly went to the break with a two-goal cushion, and should have been more.
After a spell of dominance, the hosts went ahead on the quarter hour mark when Simiyu tapped home from close range off Reagan Otieno’s cross with defender Brian Otieno assuming the goalkeeper had the ball covered.
The dockers were jittery at the back and could not hold possession while their passing was erratic. They were almost caught out in the 22nd minute when keeper Justin Ndikumana’s pass through the middle was intercepted by Simiyu.
The striker played Henry Ochieng through on goal, but the latter’s shot from point blank went over.
Two minutes later though, the home side was two goals to the good. Defender Harun Thomas thumped the ball home from inside the box after David Owino’s freekick wasn’t well cleared.
Coach Andre Cassa Mbungo’s tact of playing with Felly Mulumba as a holding midfielder against the swift playing bankers had clearly backfired and the tactician sought to right his wrongs.
He pulled out Otieno, at fault for both KCB goals and brought in Umaru Kasumba.
The change necessitated a change of shape with Mulumba dropping back to partner Bernard Odhiambo in defense while Kasumba moved up top in search for goals.
Bandari should have gone to the break with a goal, but Kasumba missed a golden chance when the ball fell to his path off a corner, but he volleyed over.
In the second half, the visitors came back with urge and push to get back into the game.
But they were almost caught out in the 58th minute when Curtis Wekesa dribbled his way into the box from the right, cut back a cross but SImiyu couldn’t find a connection from the edge of the six yard box.
The dockers tried to dump the balls behind the KCB defense, but they couldn’t find a way past the lanky Nashon Alembi who dealt with all the aerial challenges that came his way.
With eight minutes left, KCB would have firmly put the game to bed when Mike Oduor sliced in a cross from the right, but Wekesa could not connect into an empty net with Ndikumana away from goal.
But they finally did so three minutes later, Oduor again the orchestrator of the move. The former Sofapaka man made a run on the right, sliced back a cross for fellow substitute Otanga to slam home.