Tax men dragged into relegation dogfight as champions Gor close in on Tusker leaders
Just as the race for the SportPesa Premier League is gathering steam with three matches left, the fight for survival is picking up as Ushuru found themselves being dragged into the relegation dogfight following their latest defeat at the hands of Thika United.
After the manner in which they concluded the last campaign, keen observers averred that Ushuru will struggle to maintain their top flight status as a situation that was exacerbated by the departure of several key players. Ken Kenyatta’s tax men suffered their 13th defeat of the season, thanks to a second half strike from Thika’s deadly Nigerian hit-man Chibueze Onwudi.
The result left the 14th placed Ushuru, who have 24 points still in a vulnerable position, with relegation a distinct possibility as they are now just five points from safety considering struggling sides Sofapaka and City Stars picked up crucial points.
Sofapaka handed themselves a lifeline with a battling 2-1 victory over recently crowned KPL Top 8 champions Muhoroni Youth to get the weekend rolling. Goals from policeman George Maelo and Noah Abich ensured the 2009 champions still have all to play for and moved from the bottom of the table as they now have 19 points
City Stars penchant for great escapes remain as they claimed an unlikely point away at table topping Tusker. Robert Ndungu’s equaliser after Anthony Ndolo had given Tusker the lead might yet prove to be the most important goal the Kawangware side have scored this season as they now have 18 points.
Though relegation is out of the question, a top 8 finish looks to be disappearing down the horizon for AFC Leopards after they were beaten 2-0 by arch-rivals Gor on Sunday.
Second half goals one from the spot by Meddie Kagere and a brilliant strike form Enoch Agwanda stretched Leopards’ win-less streak to six matches. Leopards are not only still fourth from bottom with 30 points but also outside the top half of the table. On the other hand, the win moved second-placed Gor to within four points of table leaders Tusker, who dropped points against basement club City Stars. Tusker have 52 points while Gor are on 48 points, totals that now reduce the title showdown down to the two top teams as Chemelil Sugar and Western Stima fell by the wayside following their similar 1-1 stalemates against Posta Rangers and Ulinzi Stars respectively. Chemelil have 43 points and vastly inferior goal difference while Stima have amassed 42 points.
Ushuru FC players touch base during a recent SportPesa Premier League match. / ENOS TECHE