Bankers corner sloppy Leopards

Sunday August 26 2012

PHOTO | MOHAMMED AMIN Mungai Kiongera of KCB celebrates his goal against AFC Leopards during their Kenyan Premier League match at Nyayo Stadium on August 26, 2012. KCB won 2-0.

PHOTO | MOHAMMED AMIN Mungai Kiongera of KCB celebrates his goal against AFC Leopards during their Kenyan Premier League match at Nyayo Stadium on August 26, 2012. KCB won 2-0. NATION MEDIA GROUP

By ODINDO AYIEKO [email protected]  

AFC Leopards’ title ambitions suffered a major blow on Sunday when they crashed 2-0 to Kenya Commercial Bank at the Nyayo National Stadium.

Leopards had come into the game confident, with no loss in the second leg of the season but they were shocked by the bankers who are fighting relegation.

At 44 points, a win would have elevated Ingwe to higher levels, but while the fans were expecting a win, the players were not up to the task.

A defeat for Ingwe was well-deserved, they neither showed urgency, thirst nor interest in the game and when they lost, they had no answers.

The defeat seriously dented Leopards’ title ambitions and even despite the fact they remain at the top of the table, it will give the other contenders some hope.

Thika United won 1-0 against Karuturi Sports, Sofapaka got a point in their draw with Chemelil on Saturday and Gor Mahia also earned a point against Mathare United on Friday.

Other title contenders Tusker and Ulinzi Stars play on Monday evening and the two teams need just a draw to help either close the gap on Leopards.

Powerful shot

Peter Wainaina put the bankers ahead in the third minute after Clifford Alwanga set him up with a header, off a Patrick Matasi rebound following an initial Wainaina strike.

In the 42nd minute, Mungai Kiongera, KCB’s current top-scorer outran AFC defenders, at the same time avoiding an offside call, before releasing a powerful shot which landed in the net behind Matasi.

Leopards tried their best but in was not good enough and coach Jan Koops conceded defeat.

“KCB played very well and they deserved to win,” said Koops. “We were not in our best concentration in the first half, and KCB took advantage of this to score the goals.

“Seeing that we are still in the race for the title, we shall correct where we went wrong before we play our next match.”

In Thika, Clifton Miheso’s strike in the 87th minute gifted Thika united three points as they continued their march to the top five.

All seemed headed for a draw until Miheso rose to put the hosts ahead as the visitors fought back in vain.