AFC Leopards edged out Nzoia Sugar 1-0 at Ruaraka Stadium and was the only winning side in a day marked by draws in this Betking Premier League (BPL) match at Ruaraka Stadium on Saturday.
With both teams having stayed out for a long time, it was a struggle for each of them to find their rhythm but it was AFC who threatened first forcing a good save from Nzoia Sugar custodian Benson Mangala.
AFC Leopards Austin Odhiambo was becoming instrumental in attack and he had another attempt to give his side the lead but his effort went narrowly wide.
After another good attack down the left-hand side for leopards, Peter Ng’ang’a sent in a wonderful cross which Elvis Rupia flicked onto the path of Caleb Olilo who made no mistake and gave his side the winning goal of the contest.
Nzoia Sugar always looked threatening going forward and James Kibande forced AFC Leopards goalkeeper Benjamin Ochan into a good save. He would then be called into action later from Nzoia’s Evans Simiyu to ensure they went at the break with their one goal lead.
Simiyu then had a chance to put his side level at the break but his effort went over the bar. The away side were looking more dangerous by then and Simiyu once again mishit the ball and his frustration showed he should have scored that.
AFC Leopards were struggling to create anything meaningful except a well worked attack which led to a foul in the box and had legitimate claims of a handball waved off. Nzoia continued sustaining their attacks but lacked the finishing touch despite being the better side in this half.
Nzoia Sugar remain 13th in the league and will feel hard done by the score line and deserved at least a draw in this game. They had only lost once in five games prior to today in their bid to avoid being in the relegation places and will relish facing Bidco United at home where they are unbeaten.
AFC despite not having their coach for some period got the job done as they climbed up the table. They have conceded the least goals so far and have Ochan to thank as he made some good saves to earn their eighth clean sheet of the campaign. They face Mathare United who are without a win in their last six games and have a week to prepare as they aim to raise their fitness levels so as not to drop their intensity as they did in today’s game.