Nairobi — Vincent Oburu's first half goal earned AFC Leopards revenge over Chemelil Sugar, with Ingwe coming off 1-0 winners at the Kasarani Stadium on Sunday afternoon having lost the first leg 2-0 in Chemelil.
This was the first time since 2014, and only the second time in 15 years that AFC Leopards was beating their bogey team Chemelil in a league fixture.
But the sugar millers will feel hugely undone with the result especially in the second half when they thought they were denied two stonewall penalties through handball offences inside the box.
Oburu opened the scoring in the ninth minute when he broke the offside trap to pick out an Andrew Tololwa through pass before turning to his favorite left foot to beat a helpless Jairus Adira in the Chemelil goal.
Just has been their norm in the recent matches, AFC had started the match with pace, attacking with every opportunity and within the opening half hour, they should have already wrapped up the victory.
Five minutes after going ahead, Ingwe had another chance when Dennis Sikhayi released Alex Kitenge on the left.
The Burundian forward made a good run into the box but his final product, a shot at goal with more than three blue shirts begging for the ball at the edge of the six yard box, went against the side netting.
Kitenge was guilty of another brilliant missed opportunity in the 22nd minute. Andrew Tololwa set him up nicely inside the box from Oburu's cross, but the striker once again blasted the ball wide within good scoring range.
-Chemelil first chance-
Chemelil who had all along been building up patiently had their first chance of the game on the half hour mark and it was an open chance that should have ended inside the box.
Jaffery Owiti picked out John Mwita with a good lofted ball from distance, the lanky forward colliding with AFC keeper Gabriel Andika as he rose high for the ball. From the resultant loose ball, Mwita recovered to pick, but his shot with an open goal mouth was over.
Two minutes later, former Kakamega Homeboyz Under-20 captain Faraj Ominde was nicely set up by Collins Neto, but his rising shot went over the target. The effort had come at the end of a brilliant build up from the visitors, playing beautiful short passes from the back without Ingwe touching the ball.
Chemelil had been dominant in possession, the combination of Ominde and Apollo Otieno in the middle of the pack being a beauty to watch especially with the young Apollo initiating moves from deep in his own half.
The visitors however were almost caught off from a swift change of play by AFC, Musa Mudde picking out Andrew Tololwa with a little dinked cross from the right. However, defender James Omino's presence put off Tololwa, whose unconventional connection came off the bar.
But the sugar millers kept their forward play, dominating proceedings and knocking for the equalizer. A minute to the break Andika produced a point blank save to deny Mwita who headed at goal from an Owiti cross from the left.
Abdallah Juma's men picked up the second half from where they had left the first. Ten minutes after the restart, they had two golden chances but once again, their finishing came into question.
Some good build up play from the left saw Apollo gifted with the ball inside the box but his low shot was pushed to the upright by a full stretched Andika. From the rebound, the ball was played out wide to Mwita, with only Andika at his mercy blasting the ball wide.
Chemelil continued to pound the Ingwe box in search of an equalizer but the hosts defended in numbers. Matano brought on Whyvonne Isuza and Marcelus Ingotsi, like for like changes for Kitenge and Tololwa in a bid to bolster the attack.
Chemelil thought they should have had a penalty 15 minutes to time when Salim Abdallah seemed to have handled inside the box, but the referee had none of it. The Chemelil players were incensed with the decision, flooding the referee with complains but there was no change in decision.
-Last minute chances-
AFC came alive in the final five minutes of the game and also had two good chances. First, Ingotse found shoting space at the edge of the box twice, one of the efforts being saved by Adira while the second went over.
Oburu should have completed his brace with three minutes to spare, but his shot from inside the box from an Isuza pass was saved by Adira with James Omino clearing the rebound.