Sofapaka 2-2 Kariobangi Sharks: Late Machika header denies Batoto ba Mungu
Sydney Lokale and Kevintom Machika were on target for the visitors with Elly Asieche and Sammy Imbuye replying for the former champions.
Batoto ba Mungu started the match on a high note hoping to get an early goal to disorganize their visitors and put them under pressure. It was not going to be easy, though, as the 2018 Shield champions kept their cool and ensured the ball is not in their danger zone.
Despite starting on a low note, it was the visitors who opened the scoring in the 10th minute. A Faina Jacob clearance hit Asieche and the ball fell kindly for Lokale, who made no mistake from about 12 yards to hand his team an opening goal.
After a quarter of an hour, the 2009 champions won a throw-in deep in the Sharks half and the defenders failed to clear it and Imbuye nearly made the most of the chance but his attempt narrowly missed the target.
As the match went on, the Kariobangi side continued to grow in confidence, stringing together passes from the back and hitting their opponents on counter-attacks when able.
The best chance for Sofapaka so far came after half an hour when a good cross from the left found Ugandan Peter Lswassa in a good position, but the his header flew over the bar with the goalkeeper well beaten.
Patillah Omotto was unfortunate to handle the box in the 40th minute and the referee had no option but hand the John Baraza-led side a penalty. Asieche kept his cool to convert it and hand his team an equaliser.
Imbuye completed the comeback in the stroke of half-time heading in a cross past hapless Brian Bwire to ensure his side go to the break with a 2-1 lead.
The second half was not that open as both teams played with caution; Sharks seemingly resorted to cautious play relying on counter-attacks while Sofapaka ensured they keep the ball and frustrate their opponents.
James Mazembe raced clear in the 76th minute before bringing in a cross from the left in search of Lokale, but the striker was not given space to shoot. The situation became worse for Sharks when Sven Yidah was sent off moments later for a second bookable offence.
With about two minutes to full-time, Sharks won a corner which was fired in by Omotto and substitute Machika nodded the ball past the custodian to make it 2-2.
A minute later, Asieche thought he had won it for Batoto ba Mungu but he was wrongly flagged offside by the second assistant referee.