A wasteful Posta Rangers was held to a barren draw by Ulinzi Stars in a SportPesa Premier League encounter played at the Thika Sub-county Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
The two teams have now drawn five times in ten SPL meetings. They last settled for a draw in August 2016.
Ulinzi, who ended Posta’s unbeaten run with a 1-0 win during the first leg played in May in Nakuru County, take their tally to 37 points from 23 rounds and similar to Posta, who remain sixth with an inferior goal difference, though having played 25 matches.
“We should have killed the game in the first three minutes. Nairuka (John) had a one against one chance and later created two more chances that we couldn’t bury.
“It’s tough, seven games without a win, today I thought I tried something different in the second half with the changes but unfortunately luck wasn’t on our side. We’ve to learn how to finish off our chances and get back to winning ways,” outscored Posta Head Coach Sammy ‘Pamzo’ Omollo.
His opposite number Benjamin Nyangweso showed discontent with a point as the chase for the title gets tougher.
“Any slump in our run is an advantage to Gor so we need to win. A draw away from home is a plus but not good result for us who want to be champions. I think we could have bagged all the points had we converted our chances in the second half,” he said.
From the opening whistle, Posta showed early scares. Gerson Likono had his header parried by Jackton Odhiambo in Ulinzi goal off a John Nairuka free kick barely seconds into the match.
Nairuka almost punished his former employers a minute later. The former Thika United man lurched onto a loose ball inside the area but his fierce shot was patted by Odhiambo.
By the 14th minute, the Soldiers were yet to carve out a shooting chance. Mukaisi failed to break the deadlock at the quarter hour mark when he beat his marker at the edge of the box but his terrific shot was blocked by Geoffrey Kokoyo.
In the 24th minute, Brian Birgen beat Likono to the ball, raced down the right flank to float in a dangerous cross with Stephen Waruru the target. The latter was however denied by a hawk-eyed Patrick Matasi.
The 2010 SPL champions continued to resist the pressure from the hosts towards the breather.
Posta on their side continued to pass and probe in the final third but Ulinzi were defensively sound.
With five minutes to the break, Cliff Kasuti, who netted in the team’s 2-1 win over Sofapaka last week, exchanged with Samuel Onyango to put through Waruru whose attempt was easily picked by Matasi.
Both teams effected changes when the second half resumed. Posta pulled out Mukaisi and Edwin Mwaura for Joseph Nyagah and Eric Kibiru.
Ulinzi introduced Oscar Wamalwa, Michael Otieno and Justine Onwong’a for Waruru, Churchil Muloma and Kasuti in the 51st, 76th and 82nd minutes respectively.
Posta hunt for a goal to end their seven match winless run was elusive. Luke Ochieng’s trademark long throw ins were all tamed by a vigilant Ulinzi backline.
Just before his substitution, Kasuti thought to have buried home in the 76th minute but his attempt from close range veered off target after he had been teed up by Onyango.