Gor Fried as Tusker Surge Ahead

By nesta kizito
Mar 23, 2021
  • Collins Ochieng of Ulinzi dribbles past Tusker's Khahalid Oucho. (Photo By Shutterspeed)

Top Fry Nakuru pulled off arguably the biggest upset of the season so far with a shock 2-0 win over defending champions Gor Mahia in a Kenyan Premier League match that on paper had been likened to a David versus Goliath matchup.

The two teams went into the match with records that couldn’t have been more contrasting.

While the Nakuru side, which is making its debut in the top flight league, had lost all their previous five matches, concedeing 11 goals and scoring only once, K’Ogalo boasted of an almost blameless track record.

Save for the barren draw against Thika United midweek at City Stadium, Gor Mahia had racked up three wins in four outings and were yet to concede a goal. But if Nakuru’s wait for their first win in the top flight had seemed to last an eternity, the long wait was worth all the while.

From the onset, everything that could have gone wrong went wrong for Gor Mahia, who were forced to hasten to the return of first choice goalkeeper Jerim Onyango from injury, when his understudy David Juma was carried off the pitch with an injury in the fourth minute.

Initially, the Nakuru side seemed content with a laid back approach but when Gor Mahia failed to take the initiative in the opening 45 minutes, the hosts seized the opportunity in the 48th minute courtesy of John Ndirangu, who doubled Gor Mahia’s misery on the hour mark.

Internal upheavel

And with things going haywire for Gor Mahia, former champions Tusker eased to the top of the standings with a 2-1 defeat of Ulinzi Stars at Nyayo National Stadium.

Goals either side of the break by Clifford Alwanga and Khalid Aucho were enough for the brewers’ to subdue an Ulinzi side that in recent days has been rocked by internal upheaval that claimed coach Salim Ali’s scalp.

Ulinzi’s sole goal was scored by Stephen Waruru who met Mulinge Ndetto’s cross with a thumping header 3 meters out. While this was Ulinzi’s first taste of defeat, Tusker have now gone six matches without losing and are on top of the log with 13 points.

The other team that has also not lost is Chemelil Sugar who forced AFC Leopards to a barren draw in a late kick off match at Nyayo Stadium. In a match that chances were at a premium, AFC Leopards, like in their previous matches huffed and puffed all afternoon but failed to crack the Chemelil code.

Leopards have not beaten Chemelil in the league for close to a decade now and coach James Nandwa faulted his players for not making the most of a first half in which they had a slight edge. “We played well in the first half but lost our rhythm in the second period. This is not a result that we had hoped for but that is the nature of the game,” Nandwa admitted.