Nakuru’s Afraha Stadium is the setting for a potentially explosive match pitting Sportpesa Premier League (SPL) defending champions Gor Mahia and contenders to their throne Ulinzi Stars after the soldiers kept alive their dream of wrestling the title from K’Ogalo with a 1-0 scoreline over Sofapaka last evening.
The solitary goal scored by Kevin Amwayi yesterday in the 23rd minute lifted the soldiers to within 12 points of the league leaders with five matches left to end the season. Robert Matano’s soldiers are now on 50 points after collecting two back-to-back wins since returning from the East Africa Military Games in Kampala last week.
Gor who have six matches left only need four points to guarantee the title but Ulinzi have kept K’Ogalo’s champagne chilled in ice with victory after another. The Ulinzi versus Gor match, slated for this Saturday, is a probable league decider as nothing short of a win will further delay Gor’s saunter to a third successive title and historic 15th.
Ulinzi, on the other hand need to beat Gor as well as all their remaining opponents while hoping Gor loses their remaining six matches for a chance to wear the 2015 crown.
A win for Ulinzi on Saturday will further curtail Gor’s lead to just eight points and raise worries of Matano pipping Gor to the title like he did in 2012 while coaching Tusker when he nicked it on the last day of the season in November 2012 with victory over City Stars at Hope Centre.
Gor who needed victory on that day to end 15 years of wait were held by Thika United at City Stadium, sparking mass lamentations by K’Ogalo faithful. Matano will throw everything he has at Gor and based on the soldiers’ current form, a duel to behold awaits Ulinzi fans and Kogalo’s travelling adherents.
The soldiers made light work of Sofapaka with Amwayi’s early strike and could have banged in more but wasteful new signing Enosh Ochieng failed to find the back of the net.