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Ushuru, W. Stima lose to throw NSL competition open

Barry Silah @obel_barry

Losses to Ushuru and Western Stima in a frenetic weekend saw the National Super League (NSL) table remain open.

Bidco United stunned leaders Western Stima 1-0 on Saturday at Thika Stadium and 24 hours later high riding Ushuru were stopped in their tracks by Nairobi Stima who won 2-1 at Karuturi Grounds yesterday. The top two are thus tied on 52 points with the biggest beneficiaries being third placed KCB who thrashed hapless GFE 105 by 3-0 at Sudi Stadium.

Bidco United on fifth and Nairobi Stima are separated by four points but analysts believe the duo could be crucial in deciding the direction of the championship.

Ushuru had started with a bang following Barrack Odhiambo’s 34th minute penalty after Alex Sunga was felled in the box by Joseph Shikokoti. They played with purpose closing out their opponents with discipline especially the dangerous league leading top scorer Stephen Owusu. Oscar Mbugua and Baron Jobita missed clear sitters inside the opening 20 minutes for Ushuru.

Second half was more poised for the hosts as they tossed the ball around holding possession. Ken Kenyatta deployed a strong midfield led by Patrick Macharia who bossed the midfield. However against the run of play, Ushuru defender Fan Ngaira was drawn inside out by Victor Omune before teeing up Washington Cicovi for the equaliser in the 53rd minute from a tight angle. Half an hour later, the energised Stima got their second via a Brian Musa bouncing header to collect full points.

Meanwhile, Nairobi City Stars and Kibera Black Stars drew 1-1 in a balanced contest at Camp Toyoyo. Tenth placed Black Stars opened the scoring in the 38th minute courtesy of Wilson Njuguna’s glorious free kick. In the 73rd minute, City Stars found an equaliser through Jaswel Ngugi following a poor clearance in the opponents defence.

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