Ulinzi seal Tusker Shield final as Premier League might rules
The might of the Kenyan Premier League prevailed on Saturday when leaders Tusker FC and Ulinzi Stars FC floored second-tier National Super League sides Kariobangi Sharks and KCB FC in the GOtv Shield Cup semi final double-header at Afraha Stadium in Nakuru.
The soldiers overran Sharks 4-1 with striker John Mark Makwatta grabbing a hat-trick in the second clash after Tusker laboured to put KCB to sleep in a 1-0 victory in the earlier tie.
Makwatta’s treble came in a second half goal blitz after Oscar Wamalwa had opened the scoring for Ulinzi in the first.
Shell-shocked Sharks grabbed a consolation through Steven Odhiambo in the closing stages of the match, played under heavy downpour.
Noah Wafula scored the only goal to break into the vault of the Bankers who showed their quality against a team that is eyeing the domestic double having been demoted to the NSL last season.
In the second semi final goal-fest, Sharks had themselves to blame when they conceded to the dark-stripped Ulinzi side after only five minutes when Wycliffe Otieno found Wamalwa to loop the ball over goalkeeper Malcom Oigo with no defender in sight.
Two minutes later, Ulinzi bayed for a penalty in vain after Sharks defender Pascal Ogweno seemingly handled in the box and they were almost level in the 17th when Rodgers Omondi exchanged passes with Ibrahim Kitawi before the latter shot wide.
The skies opened as the half progressed with Odhiambo testing James Saruni in the Ulinzi goal with a well struck free-kick.
At the restart, Ulinzi brought on Daniel Waweru for Hamisi Abdalla, while Sharks introduced Boniface Akenga for Samuel Muringu.
The Makwatta show was turned on in the 58th when Ogweno failed to deal with Waweru’s cross allowing the striker to take aim and beat the exposed Oigo.
Barely 120 seconds later, it was 3-1 Ulinzi when their dangerous marksman notched his brace after receiving the ball from Enos Ochieng, dancing past two Sharks defenders before finishing with aplomb.
Makwatta then claimed the match-ball when the man who has 12 in the KPL fired home a pin-point free-kick before the toothless Sharks finally registered a goal when Odhiambo scored from a similar set piece in the 83rd after Omar Bongi fouled Akenga just outside the box.
For Citizen TV updates
Join @citizentvke Telegram channel
Video Of The Day: Former sports CS Hassan Wario convicted over Rio games scam