16 April 2019

Kenya: Travel-Weary Gor Switch Attention to Local League

AFC Leopards have a chance to move to the top half of the SportPesa Premier League table on Wednesday afternoon when they face Posta Rangers at the Kenyatta Stadium in Machakos.

Local champions Gor Mahia will travel to Kakamega for their match against Kakamega Homeboyz on Thursday, which will determine whether or not they retain top position on the SPL log.

The same will apply for joint table toppers Sofapaka, who must get maximum points from Kariobangi Sharks in their match on Wednesday in Ruaraka if they are to remain in that position.

And former champions Tusker will face Sony Sugar at the Kenyatta Stadium, Machakos looking to get their renaissance going as they are now unbeaten in four games.

The battle for league leadership will, however, be the main talking point in this week's matches, and SPL supporters will be particularly keen to see how defending champions Gor Mahia perform after their embarrassing ouster from the Caf Confederation Cup.

The match might have come too soon, as the team is still in transit from Morocco back to Kenya, and the last batch comprising mostly the key players, will not be in Nairobi until 2pm Wednesday afternoon.

Homeboyz, whose lead striker Allan Wanga is currently leading the scorers' charts with 11 goals, are in a good form, and are unbeaten in six games.

This means that they are mentally and physically in good position to cause an upset on K'Ogalo players, who are bound to be jet lagged and travel weary as they approach this fixture.

Gor won the first leg fixture by a 2-1 margin on March 17, and that was the very last time the Kakamega-based side tasted defeat.

Gor coach Hassan Oktay is however likely to rest the players who travelled to Morocco, which means the likes of Jacques Tuyisenge, Shaffiq Batambuze and Ernest Wendo could be called upon to start in that match.

Homeboyz first-choice goalkeeper David Juma will be facing his former employers, as will their veteran striker Francis Ochola.

"We have prepared well and we are hoping for the best. We cannot say that it will be a difficult game simply because they (Gor) are coming from far and were beaten 7-1 last week. We have to be at our best and that is what we shall focus on," said Homeboyz coach Nicholas Muyoti.

Wednesday's Fixtures

Mount Kenya United v Chemelil Sugar (Kenyatta Stadium, Machakos)

Mathare United v Nzoia Sugar (MISC, Kasarani)

Bandari v KCB (Mbaraki Sports Club)

Western Stima v Ulinzi Stars (Moi Stadium, Kisumu)

Zoo v Vihiga United (Kericho Green Stadium)

AFC Leopards v Posta Rangers (Kenyatta Stadium, Machakos)

Thursday's Fixtures

Sofapaka v Kariobangi Sharks (Ruaraka Sports Club)

Kakamega Homeboyz v Gor Mahia (Bukhungu Stadium)

Tusker v Sony Sugar (Machakos)

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