BY STEVE AYOO
Bandari FC leapfrogged Sofapaka into second place as they made light work of Tusker FC, coming from behind to win 3-1 at the Mbaraki Sports Club, Mombasa.
Eugene Asike had given the Brewers the lead midway into the opening half but Shaban Kenga levelled matters before the break.
The Dockers took the lead through Yema Mwama just two minutes into the second interval with Benjamin Mosha netting in stoppage time to seal the win.
The victory lifted Bernard Mwalala’s charges above Sofapaka and into second place and ensured that Gor Mahia can not be crowned champions with a win in the Mashemeji Derby at the weekend.
Tusker made the trip to the coast at the back of a one-all draw away to Nzoia United and they faced a Bandari side who were looking for a fourth straight win in all competitions.
Tusker won the corresponding fixture 2-0 last season and made the stronger start as Noah Wafula wasted two open chances.
They however raced into the lead in the 22nd minute as Asike stroke the ball past Farouk Shikalo who could only palm away a powerful header from David Naftali.
Bandari continuously settled into the game and levelled 11 minutes later, Kenga heading home a William Wadri cross.
The two sides continued to entertain for the rest of the half which ended even.
The hosts emerged from the break with a spring in their step and were gifted the lead via a horrible goalkeeping mistake from Emery Mvuyekure who made a meal of a back pass and allowed Mwama to intercept before sinking the ball home.
Bandari continued to raid their visitors especially down the flanks where Hassan Abdallah and Wadri were operating.
As the game word on, the high Mbaraki humidity seemed to be taking a toll on the visitors who then conceded the third goal in stoppage time, substitute Mosha guiding the ball into the back of the net after reacting quickest to Mvuyekure’s save from Hassan’s free-kick.
Winning their game in hand puts Bandari second with 58 points, 8 behind leaders Gor Mahia with just four games till the season ends.
The result also leaves the title race still slightly open but Kogalo will be declared champions for a third straight time should they win just two of their remaining four matches or should Bandari and Sofapaka fail to rake in maximum points.