NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Gor Mahia Football Club will represent
Kenya in the 2019 CAF Champions League after securing the
domestic league crown on Saturday with a 2-0 victory over bitter
arch rivals AFC Leopards in Nairobi.
The most decorated
club in the league made history by bagging their record 17th
domestic crown with six games to spare, thanks to first half
goals from Boniface Omondi and Bernard Ondiek.
In a dramatic first half played in Nairobi, Leopards saw top
scorer Whyvonne Isuza miss a penalty with the heated game only
resuming after a lengthy stoppage when his teammates and fans
protested Gor’s second goal.
Victory saw British head coach Dylan Kerr’s side extend their
tally at the top of the Kenyan Premier League to 71 points, an
unassailable 20-point lead over second-placed Bandari FC (51)
who beat Nzoia Sugar FC 1-0 in Mombasa with Leopards (48)
Gor supporters started celebrating their fifth league success
in six seasons way before the final whistle in a frenetic
encounter that was marred by crowd trouble in the first half
before pandemonium broke out at full time.
Omondi picked up the ball outside the penalty area in the
31st minute and sent a fierce finish that wrong-footed Ezekiel
Owade in the Leopards goal for the opener.
Seven minutes later, it was 2-0 when Omondi turned provider
to lay a cut back to Ondiek to thump a finish from close range
The goal ignited protests among Leopards fans that felt their
team was denied a free kick in the build up and after a lengthy
hold up, plays resumed with seven minutes added at the end of
the opening 45.
Soon after order was restored, Leopards were awarded a
penalty which club top scorer Isuza stepped up to take but sent
his effort over the bar, sending the Gor fans into frenzy.
Gor leave the country on Monday evening ahead of their CAF
Confederations Cup second leg against USM Alger as they continue
their quest to be the first Kenyan team to qualify for the
quarters of the second-tier continental competition.
Leopards now see their league title drought extend to 21
years having last celebrated success in the domestic top flight