Posta Rangers draw first blood in KPL promotion play-off

Saturday June 15 2019

Posta Rangers forward Francis Nambute wheels away in celebration after scoring the second goal in their Kenyan Premier League relegation/promotion play-off first leg match against Nairobi Stima at the “Old Trafford” grounds, Naivasha on June 15, 2019. Rangers won the match 2-1. PHOTO | MACHARIA MWANGI |

Posta Rangers forward Francis Nambute wheels away in celebration after scoring the second goal in their Kenyan Premier League relegation/promotion play-off first leg match against Nairobi Stima at the “Old Trafford” grounds, Naivasha on June 15, 2019. Rangers won the match 2-1. PHOTO | MACHARIA MWANGI |  NATION EMDIA GROUP

MACHARIA MWANGI
By MACHARIA MWANGI
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A composed Posta Rangers side saw off hard fighting Nairobi Stima 2-1 in the first leg of their Kenyan Premier League playoff at Old Trafford stadium in Naivasha on Saturday.

With the win, Rangers are only a match away from retaining their top flight status and need to avoid defeat in the second leg encounter to be played in Machakos on Wednesday.

Rangers side relied on experience to wade off the swift Stima side that controlled most of the match, with Rangers content to sit back and catch them on the counter.

Ever green Posta defender Joackins Atudo opened the scoring after five minutes with a sumptuous free kick that went beyond the despairing dive of Stima goalkeeper Jacob Osano.

Pegged back, the Nairobi powermen played purposeful football to the delight of the home fans who were solidly behind them.

Their efforts were however repulsed by the Posta bulwark led by the solid Atudo, Simon Mbugua and non-compromising Charles Odete.

Stima persistent's probing paid off after their striker Raphael Asudi was appended outside the 18-yard box.

Taking the resultant free-kick, Dennis Oalo’s inch perfect shot curved beyond the Posta Ranger’s wall with their goalkeeper Gradus Ochieng, remaining rooted to the spot.

The two teams went to the breather at par, with Posta coming back with clear intentions in the second half. Their dangerous duo Gerson Likono and Marcellus Ingosti run their opponents rugged.

Ingosti escaped his marker and squared into to the onrushing Likono whose first time shot was blocked by the Stima rearguard but the well positioned Nambute Francis slotted the ball home on the hour mark.

Ingosti and Nambute hit the crossbar twice in quick succession with the tiring Stima side chasing shadows. Posta finished on the ascendancy with their opponents looking out of sorts.

An elated Posta Posta coach John Kamau hailed his side for the tactical display and composure, with his opposite number, Evans Mafuta admitting that they lost to an experienced and well prepared side.

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