Mathare United edged out Kariobangi Sharks 2-1 in a closely fought Kenyan Premier League (KPL) ‘slum derby’ contest on Sunday afternoon at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani.
Ahmed Ahmad struck the winner on the 84th curling the ball into the top right corner of Gad Matthews post from a free kick just outside Sharks box to hand Mathare all the three points.
Sharks had taken the lead on the 12th minute through Erick Kapaito who tapped in the ball from close range into David Okello’s near post after Harrison Mwendwa’s delightful cross.
Mathare provided a rapid response, threatening the opposition goal mouth unsuccessfully. Their efforts were rewarded on the 22nd minute courtesy of Crispine Oduor, who cleverly rounded Sharks custodian, to slot in the equaliser.
The William Muluya coached side imposed themselves on the opponents from the start, playing on a high tempo whilst weaving accurate passes from the mid, with which they created lots of opportunities.
Duke Abuya came close to doubling his side’s lead when his shot went over the bar after a fine chest control put him through on goal. Harrison Mwendwa followed with a long range shot, that just missed the mark and went over the bar.
Despite that, Francis Kimanzi’s charges gave a spirited fight after going down, taking the ascendancy of the closely fought duel though did not capitalize on most of their opportunities.
Crispine Oduor had the golden touch that restored parity for Mathare on the 22nd, dancing through the Sharks defence and leaving Gad Matthews on the floor as he calmly finished a brilliant move.
They then got the morale boost, several times raiding Sharks goal with their most notable opportunity before the half time whistle landing on for Ahmed Ahmad.
Francis Omondi and Crispine Oduor combined neatly before the latter tipped Ahmad who skewed the ball in front of goal allowing Sharks to clear.
Both teams came out after the break with the urgency of putting their team in the lead but none could get an immediate break through.
Abuya forced his way through and came close only for his shot to go wide. It was an end to end contest, Mathare on the other end with Cliff Nyakeya who fluffed his efforts wide.
Nyakeya, who came alive in the second half, made some darting runs into Sharks box, but he didn’t have enough to increase Mathare’s tally.
Moments later, Mathare were awarded a free kick on the edge of the box from a Sharks handball. Ahmad stepped up and struck the ball past a diving Matthews for the second.
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