Hgh-flying Police had the luxury of benching pardoned goalkeeper Derrick Ochan as they swept aside Onduparaka 3-1 yesterday at the MTN Philip Omondi Stadium to return to second the StarTimes Uganda Premier League table.
Ochan’s controversial red card in the earlier 3-2 loss to Vipers at Kitende was rescinded hours before the clash but club coach Abdallah Mubiru had already made up his mind to start with Thomas Ikara.
“We have three goalkeepers that can outcompete each other. It was good news that the red card was lifted though there is much yet we could change (for match day and the defeat),” Mubiru told Daily Monitor.
The match proper served two crisp jaw-dropping goals from either sides. After striker Johnson Odong had given Police the lead through a well-taken penalty on 25 minutes, Onduparaka midfielder Emmanuel Okech had the fans up and gasping with his 51st minute equaliser.
He waltzed past the Police defence and audaciously curled the ball beyond Ikara. Cops left back Eric Ssenjobe weighed in with an over-kick goal that restored the hosts’ lead before Odong sealed off the contest with a calm finish after being put through by Brian Mululi on 84 minutes.
“We showed maturity because Onduparaka had proved to be tough opponents. We decided not to rue about what happened at Kitende and now we will look at the next game against Bright Stars,” Mubiru revealed. At 19 points from nine matches, the 2005 winners are now two points adrift of leaders Vipers and level with third-placed Express.
Onduparaka stand-in coach Mubarak Wamboya blamed the loss on loss of concentration towards the end but promised instant improvement when they host Vipers on Saturday.
Tax men back
URA kept pace with the top three after holding out for a 3-2 away win over Kitara at the Kavumba to move to 18 points in fourth.
The game got off to a frenetic start when URA conceded a penalty in the first minute after Ivan Mbowa impeded Edison Agondeze in the box.
Ronald Kyamanywa stepped up to calmly convert past Nafian Alionzi. The collectors responded in typical demanding style.
A Moses Seruyide corner kick was firmly headed into the net by Steven Mukwala on five minutes before Brian Majwega got the second after good interplay with captain Shafik Kagimu.
The third goal arrived eight minutes before the break when a fast move ended with Ibrahim Dada cutting the ball back for Kagimu to side foot home from close range.
The second half so Kitara improve and they pulled a goal back after Ahsraf Mandela was punished for handling in the box with Monday Dennis scoring the resultant penalty before URA held out for a win.
Kitara remain second from bottom with a solitary point from nine games. At Bombo, Kefa Kisala’s UPDF got back to winning ways with a 2-0 victory of Mbarara City through goals from Brian Kalumba and Brian Mayanja. UPDF rose to fifth on 15, level with SC Villa and Onduparaka below them.
STARTIMES UGANDA PREMIER LEAGUE
Police 3-1 Onduparaka
Kitara 2-3 URA
UPDF 2-0 Mbarara City
Express vs Wakiso, Wankulukuku
Bul vs Myda, Njeru