WINLESS STREAK CONTINUES

Stars remain winless after Rwanda draw

Following the draw, Kenya are now second with two points behind leaders Mali, who have three, albeit with a match in hand.

In Summary

•But any hopes the Kenyan lads had of heading into the breather with a slim advantage went up in smoke after the hosts levelled terms in the most comical way to cut the celebrations short.

•Following the draw, Kenya are now second with two points behind Group 'E' leaders Mali who have three albeit with a match in hand. 

Harambee Stars' Hassan Abdalla (L) sidesteps Bobosi Byaruhanga of Uganda Cranes at Nyayo Stadium
Harambee Stars' Hassan Abdalla (L) sidesteps Bobosi Byaruhanga of Uganda Cranes at Nyayo Stadium
Image: ERICK BARASA

Harambee Stars squandered a one-goal lead to share spoils with Rwanda in a drab Group 'E' World Cup qualifier devoid of the much-anticipated fireworks at Kigali Stadium on Sunday.

Kenya drew first blood in the ninth minute when skipper Michael Olunga fired in from close range on the second bite of the cherry after Masud Juma's initial strike spilled out of Emery Mvuyekure's hands following an enticing cross from Dan Sakari.

But any hopes the Kenyan lads had of heading into the breather with a slim advantage went up in smoke after the hosts levelled terms in the most comical way to cut the celebrations short.

Amavubi Stars won a corner kick and they preferred to take it quick and short in the 21st minute. Byiringiro Lague passed the ball to Haruna Niyonzima, who lobbed his delivery into the area and found Jaques Tuyisenge strategically placed to head the ball.

However, Tuyisenge's resultant header came off the back of Abdul Rwatubyaye and swiveled into the gaping net, past a bewildered Ian Otieno — the most ridiculously scored goal in the tournament so far.

Rwanda were forced into an early change when Biyiringo was stretchered off after suffering a  concussion. In came Meddi Kagere. A minute after restart, Tuyisenge picked up the only yellow card of the day after raising his leg high to block Otieno’s goal kick in the box.

Stars emerged from the tunnel more intent and purposeful and just a minute into replay Olunga's perfect strike was parried away by Mvuyekure.

Eager to regain command of the proceedings, Mulee effected a tactical change in the 49th minute, introducing  Abdalla Hassan for Lawrence Juma.

In the 59th minute, Olunga had a glorious chance to put Kenya ahead after he collected a loose ball and waltzed his way past three opponents only to scoop his effort wide after all the spadework.

Then on the hour mark, Olunga came on the end of Sakari's cross but his final touch bounced off the ground and swirled above the crossbar.

A defensive lapse almost gifted Rwanda a goal in the 64th minute when Yannick Mukunzi darted down the right channel before unleashing a rasping shot that hurtled out of play past a helplessly looking Otieno.

Following the draw, Kenya are now second with two points behind leaders Mali, who have three, albeit with a match in hand. Mali play Uganda in Kampala on Monday.