Stephen Owusu came off the bench to help Tusker FC return to winning ways with a 2-1 win over visiting Zoo Kericho in a Kenyan Premier League (KPL) match played at the Ruaraka Grounds on Wednesday 1 September.
Zoo Kericho's custodian Samuel Koko denied Paul Odhiambo at close range in the fifth minute. The striker had been put through by Boniface Muchiri but his intended lob was well gathered by the Zoo keeper.
Tusker were keen to recover the points lost against Zoo in the first leg fixture where they were denied the entire points by the IDCC despite emerging 2-0 victors. Zoo on the other side were keen to show the hosts that they were up to the task after the early scare.
Nicholas Kipkurui pace was proving to be too much for the Tusker defence and he almost put the visitors into the lead were it not for a swift intervention from keeper David Okelo who had been preferred in place of regular Duncan Ochieng. Kipkurui was put through in the quarter hourmark by Mike Madoya with the winger having outpaced Martin Kiiza and through on goal, Okelo raced off his line to clear the danger. Madoya's hard shot was tipped over the bar by Okelo five minutes later.
On the other end Boniface Muchiri was doing his best to help his team on the scoresheet. He forced keeper Koko to a fine save following a defensive lapse from Zoo; an effort that was followed by a close miss by Allan Wanga after a well weighted Collins Shivachi’s dink on the half hour mark in a half that was to end scoreless.
Tusker’s efforts paid off in the 52nd minute, the goal coming as a result of a sheer persistence from Muchiri who had been the best player on the pitch. A simple throw in by Asike to Muchiri saw the ex-Sony Sugar man send in a ball that was well controlled by Humphrey Mieno who coolly slotted in past Koko in the 52nd minute.
Asike was to see his weighted ball minutes after the Mieno goal punched for for fruitless corner by Koko as pressure piled on the hosts side. Seeing his side had the momentum, coach George Nsimbe threw in Michael Khamati for Allan Wanga.
Twenty minutes from time Zoo restored parity. Out of nowhere and with Tusker having dominated play for the better part of the second half, Wilson Andati who had just been introduced five minutes earlier for Danson Namasaka was to put his name into the score sheet. Madoyo with one of his amazing runs having waded a challenge from Situma sent in a ball that was mistimed by Okelo in the Tusker goal; the hovering Andati taping the ball into the empty net.
Tusker resilience again paid off eight minutes from time with Stephen Owusu who had been thrown in for Martin Kiiza once again coming to the brewers rescue. After some donkey work from Khamati who out muscled his marker on the right wing, the ex AFC Leopards striker sent in a one time cross that was tucked in by the onrushing Owusu for Tusker's second.