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African All Stars

Olunga’s fine run continues with another goal as Al Duhail SC held by Al Sailiya

8:33 AM GMT 18/01/2022
Kenya and Harambee Stars striker Michael Olunga.
The 27-year-old Harambee Star was on target yet again for the Red Knights as they secured a draw in the top-flight fixture on Monday

Kenya international Michael Olunga continued with his fine run of form in the Middle East after notching his second successive goal as Al Duhail SC battled to a 1-1 draw against Al Sailiya in a Qatar Stars League fixture on Monday.

With a 0-0 score in the first half of the fixture at Suheim Bin Hamad Stadium, the 27-year-old Harambee Stars captain broke the deadlock for the Red Knights in the 56th minute.

However, the hosts did not give up as they kept attacking and pressing for a leveller and they finally snatched a draw when Majdi Siddiq scored at the stroke of full time.

It was Duhail, who looked the most dangerous side from the onset and they should have taken an early lead in the 12th minute when Olunga’s cross found Almoez Ali in an unmarked position, but his weak effort could not trouble Al Sailiya goalkeeper Amine Lecomte.

However, Duhail suffered a blow in the 31st minute when Brazilian playmaker Edmilson Junior picked an injury and was replaced by Abdullah Alahrak.

Junior’s exit slowed down Duhail’s tempo but in the 44th minute, Olunga missed a clear chance after his glancing header from a corner kick (delivered by Ali) hit the woodwork with the keeper out of his line.

However, Olunga finally put Duhail ahead 11 minutes after the restart for the second half when he latched onto a cross from Ali, sidestepped two defenders before firing home using his left foot past keeper Lecomte.

After the goal, Duhail wasted a host of chances and with the game heading in their favour and time running out, Al Sailiya scored at the death after Siddiq powered home a cross from Riadh Mekideche past goalkeeper Salah Zakaria.

The former Gor Mahia striker has now scored 17 top-flight goals so far in this campaign from 13 appearances after raking in 1092 minutes of play-time.

Duhail coach Luis Castro was left gutted with the outcome describing the result as very bad.

“We succeeded in controlling the match almost completely, but unfortunately, we did not succeed in getting a positive result, but rather we came out with a very bad result,” Castro told the club’s official website.

“The team failed today [Monday] because of the circumstances surrounding it, such as injuries during the course of the match and absences that hit the team since the beginning of the season.”

Despite the draw, Duhail remained top of the 12-team table with 33 points from 15 matches, two more than second-placed, and champions Al Sadd, who have played four matches less.

Olunga and Duhail will turn their focus to the next league match when they host Al-Wakrah at Grand Hamad Stadium on Saturday.