Two goals from Elvis Rupia was enough to end KCB FC’s unbeaten start to the season as AFC Leopard’s claimed a close 2-1 win in a round 8 encounter played on Sunday 17 January at the outside picth of the Kasarani Stadium.
Rupia scored either side of halftime to render Samuel Mwangi’s opener a mere consolation and in the process hand KCB their first loss of the season.
The former Nzoia Sugar striker has started the season in fine form and after Saturday’s brace has now managed eight goals in just six matches.
Leopards now move up to 5th place with 12 points courtesy of the win, six points adrift of KCB who still maintain hold of top spot despite the loss.
Looking to get back to winning ways after losing their last two games against Western Stima and Wazito, Leopards began on a disappointing note as just eight minutes into the game, fullback Isaac Kipyegon was forced off due to injury with youngster Lewis Esambe being thrust in for his debut appearance for the club.
The change in the backline would have an immediate impact for Anthony Kimani’s men as a mix-up in the danger area led to Mwangi opening the scores with a fierce drive in the 24th minute.
A costly error in the opposite end too would provide Rupia the perfect chance to equalize as he took advantage of a poor attempt of a clearance by the KCB keeper to notch his seventh goal of the season.
After the interval, Rupia would again create space for himself and bag the winner with 12 minutes played of the second period.
Leopards were unfortunate not to get a third as Esambe was denied a debut goal by the linesman flag late in the game.
Below is how both teams lined-up;
Starting XI: Benjamin Ochan (GK), Collins Shivachi, Clyde Senaji, Robinson Kamura, Isaac Kipyegon (8’ L.Esambe), Collins Sichenje, Fabrice Mugheni (86’ S.Tsuma), Austin Odhiambo (77’ P.Thiong’o), Elvis Rupia (77’ H.Ochieng), Bienvenue Shaka, Marvin Omondi
Subs: John Oyemba, Jaffari Owiti, Caleb Olilo
Starting XI: Joseph Ochuka (GK), Baraka Badi, Nashon Nanyendo, Dennis Odhiambo (56’ R.Otieno), Rama Mwenda, Michael Mutinda, Simon Abuko (56’ H.Eshiboko), Brian Ndenga (63’ V.Wasambo), Derrick Otanga, David Owino, Samuel Mwangi (68’ V.Omondi)
Subs: Gabriel Andika (GK), Gabriel Odiwuor, Bethuel Achola, Victor Ochami, Ian Motanda, Martin Mbugua, Brian Wepo, Thomas Harun,