Kenya’s Harambee Stars were held to a 2-2 draw against Russia in an international friendly played at the Titanic Sports Complex in Antalya, Turkey on Monday night.
Russia’s Aleksandr Sobolev notched a goal for Russia in the eighth minute, giving his team an early lead. The game’s dynamics took an unexpected turn in the 13th minute with Harambee Stars goalkeeper Byrne Omondi sustaining an injury, that saw coach Engin Firat bring in second goalkeeper Patrick Matasi.
In the 16th minute, Anthony Akumu masterfully leveled the scores. Masud Juma added the second goal for Kenya in the 36th minute ensuring Harambee Stars held a 2-1 advantage at halftime. After the break, relentlessly pressed to break past each other’s defenses, however in the 89th minute, Russia’s Ivan Oblyakov found the back of the net to level the scores at 2-2.
The Harambee Stars now shift their focus to the upcoming FIFA World Cup Qualifiers scheduled to commence in November. They are pooled in Group F against Ivory Coast, Gabon, Gambia, Burundi, and Seychelles.
Kenya starting XI; Byrne Odhiambo (GK), Amos Nondi, Joseph Okumu, Johnstone Omurwa, Erick Ouma, Richard Odada, Anthony Akumu, Kenneth Muguna, Rooney Onyango, Masud Juma, Michael Olunga.
Subs; Patrick Matasi, Brian Bwire, Brian Mandela, Collins Sichenje, Daniel Sakari, Vincent Harper, Alpha Onyango, Ayub Timbe, Ovella Ochieng, Alfred Scriven, Cliffton Miheso, and Moses Shummah.