The much awaited day finally came as the team graced the Kasarani Stadium for our maiden continental fixture. Questions had been asked, eyebrows had been raised but most importantly belief had been emphasized by the man at the helm, Coach William Muluya.
It was left to be seen what this group of young lads, rookies at this stage, would have for a response when the kick-off whistle blows.
Straight off the blocks, Duke Abuya put us ahead after debutant Tom Teka picked him out with a long ball from deep in our half which left him one on one with the keeper in just the third minute of the match. The boys showed that they meant business as in form striker Sydney Lokale who has had a good pre-season produced one for the cameras when he got to the end of a Patilla Omoto pass and left two defenders and the goalkeeper for dead before sliding the ball into the empty net.
Four minutes later, more pressure from the lads forced the first corner of the game and Nixon Omondi shot from the James Mazembe in-swinger was escorted in to the net by the tormented visitors defense line. A dip in concentration levels saw us survive a scare as the visitors hit the wood work in the 22nd minute.
However, the boys got their act back together and in the 40th minute midfielder Patilla Omoto rose high to head in a Duke Abuya cross to make four for us. As we looked destined to head in to the break with a clean sheet, the visitors won and converted a penalty with what was the last kick of the game.
The early exchanges of the second half saw the boys consolidate the lead with some fine possession play switching the ball from left to right. Midway through the half, the enterprising Duke Abuya beat two defenders down the wing before sending a low cross in to the danger area which was converted by Ugandan George Abege in his now new jersey number nine shirt.
The boss then threw in Vincent Wasambo, Henry Juma and Fidel Origa for Lokale, Abege and Mazembe in the last quarter of the match. The boys kept the hunger to the very end as Fidel Origa tapped in the sixth goal from yet another Duke Abuya pass deep into added time.
The result was the best possible way for the boys to introduce themselves at the continental stage and one can only hope for better things to come as we head for the second leg in Djibouti next Wednesday with Asante Kotoko of Ghana waiting for the victor.