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Hassan Oktay slams Ulinzi Stars for playing a ‘dirty’ game against Gor Mahia

3:05 PM SGT 30/4/19
Gor Mahia coach Hassan Oktay.
The Cypriot coach was left fuming after several of his players picked up injuries during their Kenyan Premier League match played at Afraha Stadium

Gor Mahia coach Hassan Oktay has hit out at Ulinzi Stars for playing a ‘dirty’ game when the two sides met in a Kenyan Premier League (KPL) match at Afraha Stadium in Nakuru on Monday.

The Kenyan champions opened a nine-point lead at the top of the 18-team KPL table after goals from Ugandan striker Erissa Ssekisambu and Samuel Onyango secured a 2-1 away win over the Soldiers.

Despite picking up the vital win against a side that denied him maximum points in the reverse fixture, coach Oktay was not happy because several of his players was injured in the tie.

“They (Ulinzi Stars) played to injure my players not to win the match. You could see seven of their players received yellow cards and that shows you the intensity of the match and how rough our opponents were,” Oktay told Goal in an interview.

“I don’t know if they had planned to injure every player in my squad but honestly speaking the kind of game they put up was not good at all. I will have to access my team again to see who managed to come out without injury as we have another match on Thursday.”

Oktay was, however, impressed by his charges after they put up a solid display to dismantle the Soldiers in their own backyard.

“I love watching my boys these days, they played very well especially in the first half, but our main worry is in the second period because they seem to get tired and lose the momentum. I know this is because of the many games we have been playing in recent weeks,” Oktay continued.

“I was very impressed with what I saw from the boys, it was a good match and despite Ulinzi Stars coming at us in the second half, we remained tight at the back and shut them off. We have to keep the winning run going because that will help us to push for the league title.”

On whether his players will see off the congested fixture list, Oktay said, he will continue to rotate the squad so as to give rest to those who are tired or injured.

“I must keep rotating my squad, that is for sure. I know every player would love to play in each and every match but the situation we are in will not allow that. I have to access the squad after every match and this helps me to come up with the squad for the next match,” Oktay added.

Gor Mahia will now take on KCB on Thursday before they battle Western Stima on Sunday in Kisumu.