Newly-promoted side Green Commandos coach, Brenden Mwinamo, is disappointed that his team could not hold on to their 1-0 lead and begin their historic journey in Kenya’s second tier league with a win as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Coast Stima.
Mwinamo, however, expressed optimism that the schoolboys are up to the task.
“We conceded a very easy goal very late in the match, but that is the nature of football. We will go back and try to correct our mistakes,” said the Green Commandos coach.
Coast Stima tactician, Kinero Swaleh, on his part, noted that the National Super League is quite physical, as compared to the Division One League, but further exuded confidence in his team ahead of this new challenge.
“Our opponents were quite physical, and we are also set to travel a lot as opposed to last season. But my boys are ready to compete at this level,” said the coach.
The hosts dominated proceedings early in the match, but could not find a way past an organized Stima defence. The first half ended in a 0-0 stalemate.
Upon resumption, Green Commandoes survived a scare when Stima forward Muhiddin Muhiddin broke the deadlock only for the goal to be ruled out for offside.
Green Commandos would then punish Stima less than 10 minutes later when Henry Atola received a through-pass, rounded up the goalkeeper before calmly slotting into an empty net.
As the match seemed to be heading Green Commandos way, Stima won a free kick just outside the box, with five minutes left on the clock.
Substitute Collins Kombo stood up to the task, sending a rather tame effort that the hosts’ goalkeeper, Seif Mwinyi, failed to handle, parrying it into his own net.
Stima face Kisumu All-Stars in Mombasa on Saturday while Commandos will be up against Nairobi Stima at Karuturi grounds.