AFCON 2017 Qualifier
Result: Kenya 1-2 Zambia
Date: 06 September 2015
Venue: Nyayo National Stadium
Zambia were slender 2-1 victors against a resilient Kenyan outfit at the Nyayo National Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
Both sides were in search of a crucial three points having played to two respective draws in the opening round of the Orange Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.
Kenya were quick out the starting blocks and Michael Olunga tested Kennedy Mweene with a 2nd minute volley which the Mamelodi Sundowns’ stopper comfortably latched onto.
Ayub Timbe almost beat the Zambian keeper in the 11th minute but his free-kick sailed over the crossbar, with an uneasy Mweene only watching over it. Two minutes later though, Olunga was put through on goal and poked the ball past a helpless Mweene to give the Kenyans a 1-0 advantage early in the first half.
Zambia seemed to have been given a wake-up call by the goal and began putting together some nice passing phases. Arnold Origi had to produce a superb double save to keep Kenya in the lead after an uncomfortable goal-mouth scramble around the 22th minute.
The Zambian pressure paid off five minutes later when Winston Kalengo collected a throw in the box before rattling the roof of the net with a clinical finish to bring the scores level at 1-1.
Both sides were displaying a wonderful brand of football with Timbe entertaining the crowd with his dazzling runs.
It was, however, Collins Mbesuma stepped up right before the half-time mark to rattle the net with a powerful strike, ensuring Chipolopolo headed into the break with a 2-1 advantage.
The host nation were once again the brighter starters in the second stanza, and Olunga came close after rising to head a free-kick effort that was cleared off the line. The Harambee Stars continued to dominate and Olunga had a couple of half-chances in the opening exchanges of the second half.
Mweene was seeing a lot of the ball and almost made a blunder in the 76th minute when he failed to catch an in-coming cross, but a teammate was there to save the goalkeeper.
Kenya began to gain some momentum in the dying moments of the game and Mweene was feeling the pressure as he failed to reach the ball with an attempted puch in the 88th minute but no harm was done as the Kenyans were unable to capitalize.
Dennis Oliech had a last gasp effort with a lovely volley in added time, but the defender watched his deflected effort go agonizingly wide.