Coach William Muluya decided to start with Jeff Oyemba in goal ahead of Brian Bwire, with Sydney Lokale, who scored that one goal against Gor Mahia in the KPL Super Cup, starting in the attacking department.
On the other hand, Gor Mahia coach Hassan Oktay gave Geoofrey Onyango and Ephram Guikan a chance to impress, with the likes of Pascal Ogweno, Erisa Ssekisambu and Nicholas Kipkirui starting from the bench.
It was the Shield champions, who started the match on a high note, with their slick football troubling the opponents. It paid dividends in the 17th minute when Duke Abuya stole past the defenders before hitting the ball past a hapless keeper Boniface Oluoch.
Sydney Lokale, Harrison Mwendwa and George Abege had chances to double the advantage for the Sharks but failed to take them. K’Ogalo struggled to find their way into the final third with Jacques Tuyisenge at times looking isolated.
However, the best chance for the Kenyan champions was wasted by Ephrem Guikan, who was put through but could not find the right footing to bury it.
After the break, Gor Mahia came back with intentions to make things even. George ‘Blackberry’ Odhiambo, Tuyisenge and Guikan with the support of Onyango tried to get their passes together, but the resilient Sharks defense made it harder for the visitors.
With about an hour gone, the hard working Patillah Omotto slipped Abuya in, but the latter decided to pass the ball instead of finishing it, and K’Ogalo survived the scare.
The meaningful attempt by the champions after the break came with about fifteen minutes to go when Guikan broke from the left before unleashing a fierce strike that Oyemba parried. George Odhiambo failed to capitalize on the rebound as the goal went out for an unfruitful corner.
Despite numerous attempts by Gor Mahia to get something, Sharks held on to register a win, their first in the league against Gor Mahia.
Kariobangi Sharks XI: John Oyemba, Michael Bodo, Geoffrey Shiveka, Tom Teka, Nixon Omondi, Patilah Omotto, Duke Abuya (John Koul), Harrison Mwendwa, Vincent Wasambo (Shapan Oyugi), George Abege, Sydney Lokale (Sven Yidah).
Subs: Brian Bwire, John Koul Moses Mwangi, Henry Mwangi and Finlay Osoro.
Gor Mahia XI: Boniface Olouch, Geoffrey Ochieng, Philemon Otieno, Joash Onyango, Harun Shakava, Ernest Wendo, Samuel Onyango, Humphrey Mieno, Ephrem Guikam (Francis Mustapha), (Erisa Ssekisambu), Jacques Tuyisenge and George Odhiambo.
Subs: Fredrick Odhiambo, Wellington Ochieng, Pascal Ogweno, Nicholas Kipikrui and Cercidy Okeyo.