KPL Top 8 final: Tusker edge past AFC Leopards to retain title

A goal each by Lloyd Wahome and Clifford Alwanga ensured brewers' emerged winners as Ingwe grabbed consolation through Joseph Shikokoti

Tusker successfully retained their Kenyan Premier League (KPL) Top- 8 trophy after stopping AFC Leopards 2-1 at Meru Stadium on Sunday.

A goal each by Lloyd Wahome and Clifford Alwanga ensured the brewers emerged winners. Leopards got their lone goal through Joseph Shikokoti.

It was an exciting first half that was decided by two set-pieces and as exclusively reveled by Goal, Ingwe played minus Dutch coach Pieter De Jong, who traveled home to attend to sick father. Lloyd Wahome headed home a perfectly curved corner kick by Kevin Kimani in 11th minute.

Then in the 35th minute Leopards' were back in the match and this time towering defender Joseph Shikokoti headed home from an Abdallah Juma free-kick. It was Leopards', who got the first chance to go ahead with Jacob Keli shooting directly at Samuel Odhiambo in Tusker goal after five minutes of play.

One minute later, Wycliffe Kasaya stopped an intended through ball to Clifford Alwanga from Aboud Omar and it looked like the best chance for the brewers' to go ahead. The action kept shifting from coast to coast and a minute after Kasaya's save it was the turn of Samuel Odhiambo to save brewers' as he denied Paul Were with the effort resulting in first corner for Leopards'.

Tusker preferred to use flanks from which they launched their attacks. They were especially dominant on left side of the pitch and it is from here that they won their first corner in the 11th minute and resulted in the opener.

Leopards' had trouble marking against corner-kicks and indeed all set-pieces. They should have conceded second goal from Tusker's second corner which Aboud Omar placed at the feet of Bob Mugalia but the Congolese wasted.

Mugalia ended first half on a caution as did team mate Clifford Alwanga. James Situma and Eric Masika were also cautioned in Leopards' side. As the second half kicked-off, Leopards' rested Oscar Kadenge for Musa Mudde while Tusker brought on Jesse Were for Bob Mugalia.

It was however, Tusker, who had an upper hand as second half started. Brian Osumba should have headed home Were's first touch of the ball but was denied by Kasaya in goal. As the brewers' pushed, they were awarded by a 51st minute but failed to get anything from it. From the counter-attack, Jacob Keli out ran his markers but nothing much came from his effort.

Leopards' then made another change resting Bernard Mang'oli for Noah Wafula. However, Leopards' seemed to suffer a lot at the back and pressure from their opponents looked too much to bear. In 78th minute, Clifford Alwanga slammed home the winner from a goal mouth melee and with it ensured that Tusker won their second consecutive KPL-Top 8 trophy.