A combined team selected from the Kenyan Premier League lost 2-1 to English Premier League side Hull City’s development squad in a match played at the KCOM Stadium on Monday night.
Tusker FC midfielder Humphrey Mieno pulled back a late goal in the 86th minute.
Substitute Elliot Holmes’ goal just two minutes after coming on in the first half and a Harun Shakava own goal in the second half had given the hosts a 2-0 lead.
Stanley Okumbi, the Harambee Stars head coach and Patrick Naggi, a former Football Kenya Federation Technical Director coached the select side.
Among the new faces brought in who are not regulars with the national team included Western Stima left back Wesley Onguso and Ulinzi Stars winger Cliff Kasuti.
In this match, the hosts started well and within the first four minutes, they had already caused the All Stars side discomfort. Osborne Monday lost the ball to Josh Tymon who played a quick one-two with Ben Hinchliffe.
Tymon’s effort at goal was blocked for a corner by Shakava. A minute later, Hincliffe beat the offside trap after being played through by Greg Olley, but his shot went inches wide with Patrick Matasi in the Kenyan left stranded.
The Kenyan All Star team thought they should have had a penalty in the sixth minute after John Mark Makwatta was nudged from the back, but the ref waved play on. The game was stopped for about 12 minutes after Hull player Max Sheaf went down unconscious after a clash of heads with Onguso.
Upon resumption, Sheaf’s replacement Holmes rose highest to head in a cross from Stephen Akbas, the Kenyan backline guilty of ball watching.
Four minutes later, another header almost saw the Kenyans go 2-0 down but Matasi pulled a decent save to tip over a Ben Adamson header from a Jarrod Bowen free kick.
The Hull players whose age ranged between 16 and 21 were showing off their good academy background, passing the ball well around the pitch.
Osborne Monday, at the heart of Kenya’s midfield put in a shift to control the proceedings. The Kenyans had to wait until the 41st minute for their first effort at goal, youngster Kasuti wrapping the ball around his right foot but the Hull keeper was alert.
In the fifth minute of added time, his Ulinzi team mate John Mark Makwatta tried his luck with a volley from distance which went high.
In the second half, the visitors came back a better side. Allan Wanga partnering Makwatta upfront increased his work rate. In the 58th minute, Wanga teed Makwatta whose attempt at picking up a spot at the far post with a curled effort was inches off target.
On the hour mark, Wanga had another chance from a loose ball inside the box but the Hull keeper blocked the effort.
Four minutes later, Robinson Kamura's effort from a freekick at the edge of the box flew wide.
Against the run of play, Hull added a second with Shakava scoring past his own keeper in an attempt to clear away a cross from Hinchliffe.
But the Kenyans never gave and in the final 20 minutes upped the pace. The introduction of the experienced Moses Odhiambo spiced things up for Okumbi’s men.
In the 76th minute, the Sofapaka man’s well weighted cross found an unmarked Mieno inside the box but his header was wide.
With 10 minutes remaining, Hull brought on their club legend Dan Windass much to the delight of the crowd. Windass had an effort from a freekick go wide two minutes after coming on.
The All Stars came close in the 84th minute when Makwatta intercepted a back pass to the Hull keeper, but he could not find the net from a tight angle.
Mieno halved the deficit two minutes later with a long range effort that skidded away from the Hull keeper.
With a minute to play, the impressive Monday had another long range shot from his weaker left foot punched away by the keeper.
On the opposite end, Hull would have added a third but Bowen’s curling effort after turning Kamura inside out came up against the bar.
The two teams will play in a return match in May in Nairobi. The game was organized by KPL title sponsors SportPesa who are also the shirt sponsor for the English club.