Home team Nairobi City Stars and FKF Premier League Champions Tusker FC fought out to a 0-0 draw in a 30th round clash in Ruaraka on Sunday 15 May 2022.
The results saw Simba wa Nairobi, posting a third straight clean sheet and 14th overall in the season, hit the half-century mark of 50 points to remain fourth as Tusker stagnated at the second spot with 56 points.
City Stars came to the game with a tweaked lineup with four starting changes from the team that beat Wazito 1- in the last encounter.
Former Tusker lad Michael Madoya and Rodgers Okuse Okumu earned rare starts as regular right-back Kevin Chumsy Okumu was up a field as a right-winger, while Anthony Muki Kimani came in to solidify the midfield. They took up the places of Ezekiel Odera and Davis Agesa who missed out due to suspension and injury, and the Noor siblings Elvis Ojiambo and Timothy Ouma who dropped to the bench.
Champions Tusker had a go at the City Stars goal on three occasions within the first eight minutes serving up the tone of the game.
Right-back Daniel Sakari dropped a cross in the box in the fifth minute only for it to weave wide after failing to get a connection. A minute later, a poor start from stopper Wycliffe Otieno was intercepted but keeper Jacob Osano did well to stop a direct attack on goal.
Shami Mwinyi Kibwana should have done better two minutes later when a cross found him unmarked but he smacked the ball high up when it was easier to score.
Shami’s attempt came off a counter after his keeper Patrick Matasi launched a quick restart soon after he had taken in a Herit Mungai freekick.
In the 13th minute, Tusker forced the first corner of the game that was wasted and two minutes later, Madoya, who had a good day in office, on the other end whipped the ball across goal off a throw-in.
As the clock ticked 24 minutes, City Stars had wasted a corner earned by Chumsy as defensive-mid Sven Yidah fired a long ranger straight at Matasi. And there was a Tusker corner that yielded a throw, but all were fruitless.
The goal attempts then reduced progressively as City Stars knitted passes in midfield. With two minutes to the breather, Chumsy landed in the Tusker box only for Matasi to get ahead of him to stop the danger,
The final action of the half came off a long-range shot from Stewart Omondi but Osano came out tops to force a corner that produced another. Osano collected it to end the first half action.
At the start of the second half, City Stars threw in Timothy Babu Ouma for Okuse as Tusker pulled out Shami and Shaphan Oyugi Siwa and brought in Eric Zakayo and John Njuguna in their place.
Three minutes into the second half, City Stars striker Nicholas Kipkirui looped the ball goalward only for it to land on the roof of the net.
A minute later Kipkirui earned a freekick off stopper Christopher Oruchum who earned a yellow card. Babu’s take forced a corner that was not accounted for.
Seven minutes later Tusker striker Ibrahim Joshua earned a yellow card for a foul on the line on returning Muki who had missed the last two games.
In between, Babu and Njuguna had fired the ball wide and off-target on either end. On 59 minutes, Kipkirui had a goal attempt off the edge of the box fly wide too.
Four minutes after the hour mark, Tusker brought in Ugandan Deogratious Ojok and Clyde Senaji for Rogers Ouma and Stewart Omondi.
Within the next three minutes, Osano was forced to stretch to his fullest to concede a corner off a Njuguna shot. A follow-up corner was wasted. A freekick soon after by Njuguna found Zakayo but his header clipped the woodwork and went out for rhe greatest of nearmisses.
In the 72nd minute Tusker pulled out Ibrahim for David Majak and four minutes later City Stars responded with the arrival of Elvis Noor Ojiambo and Augustine Kuta for Muki and Madoya.
In between the changes, Yidah had the best chance to break the deadlock only to fluff a perfect low ball in the box from Herit.
In the 84th minute, and to great cheers, City Stars coach Nicholas Muyoti handed on-loan Starfield Academy forward Mohammed Bajaber his Kenyan Premier League debut as he rested Kipkirui. He sneaked in behind the defense to receive a Kuta freekick for his first touch but his header aimed for the near post went wide.
In the dying minutes, Osano pulled a massive save to keep City Stars in the game after punching out a Zakayo shot for a corner.
Four added minutes could not separate the teams as City Stars wasted a corner and Tusker, once again, failed to beat an outstanding Osano in goal with a last-ditch effort.
With a barren stalemate, City Stars failed to nail their first premier league home win over Tusker since 12 Sept 2009. But they will enjoy a four-point haul from the champions this season having won the first leg tie at the same venue in mid-January 1-0.
Next up for Simba wa Nairobi is an away game against KCB on Saturday 22 May 2022 starting 3 pm.
Nairobi City Stars: 16. Jacob Osano, 8. Calvin Masawa-captain, 25. Kenedy Onyango, 22. Wycliffe Otieno, 28. Herit Mungai, 18. Sven Yidah, 5. Michael Madoya (29. Augustine Kuta-76), 30. Anthony Kimani (2. Elvis Noor Ojiambo-76), 17. Nicholas Kipkirui (31. Mohammed Bajaber-84), 19. Kevin Okumu, 7. Rodgers Okumu (20. Timothy Noor Ouma-46),
Unused subs: 1. Elvis Ochoro, 3. Charles Otieno, 4. Salim Abdallah, 12. Edwin Buliba, 26. Dennis Wanjala,
Out: 6. Ronney Kola, 9. Vincent Otieno Okoth, 10. Peter Opiyo, 14. Rowland Makati, 15. John Kamau, 21. Oliver Maloba, 23. Stephen Njunge, 24. Erick Ombija, 27. Lennox Ogutu, 32. Ezekiel Odera
Coach: Nicholas Muyoti
Tusker: 34. Patrick Matasi, 12. Isaac Kipyegon, 24. Daniel Sakari, 6. Christopher Oruchum, 27. Charles Momanyi, 30. Humphrey Mieno-Captain, 18. Stewart Omondi (13. Deogratious Ojok-64), 23. Rogers Ouma (5. Clyde Senaji-64), 17. Ibrahim Joshua (9. David Majak-72), 14. Shaphan Siwa (7. Eric Zakayo-46), 28. Shami Mwinyi (26. John Njuguna-46)
Unused subs: 29. Michael Wanjala, 22. Kevin Monyi, 21. Karlos Kirenge, 25. Kevin Okoth
Coach: Robert Matano
Cautions (Yellow cards)
Nairobi City Stars: None
Tusker: 6. Christopher Oruchum (48), 17. Ibrahim Joshua (56)