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'Mental strength helped Kakamega Homeboyz silence Gor Mahia' - Mwalala

16:30 GMT 21/12/2021
Bernard Mwalala of Nzoia Sugar.
The Western-based charges controversially defeated K'Ogalo to end their unbeaten run in the Kenyan top-tier

Kakamega Homeboyz head coach Bernard Mwalala insists the team's mental strength helped them claim maximum points against Gor Mahia last weekend.

On Saturday, at Bukhungu Stadium, Peter Lwasa gave the visitors a lead after just three minutes as the hosts took time to settle.

The goal was a wake-up call for the hosts, who did well to up their tempo. They won a penalty, controversially, in the 18th minute and George Odiwuor stepped up to restore parity. In the 54th minute, the hosts took the lead for the first time when Stephen Opoku beat Gad Mathew in the Gor Mahia goal; that happened to be the winning strike.

Mental strength was key for Homeboyz

The former international has now explained why he was impressed with his charges who are now enjoying joint top spot with KCB after accumulating 21 points from nine matches.

"The mental strength helped us on Saturday because even when we were down, we fought back well," Mwalala told GOAL.

"We battled to get goals; even when they scored, it is like they motivated us to give our best and get back into the game. I am happy we finally got three important points which will boost us in the long run."

Reactions to the controversial penalty

Gor Mahia assistant coach was unhappy with the penalty awarded to the hosts. Geoffrey Opondo tackled Yema Mwana just outside the danger zone and the referee awarded Homeboyz the penalty.

However, in a previous interview, the club's chairman Cleophas Shimanyula has termed K'Ogalo as cry babies who do not want to concede defeat.

"We beat Gor Mahia fair and square and I don’t know the reason they are making noise," Shimanyula told GOAL.

"The penalty issue was correct, their defender fouled [Mwana] inside the box, so it was a clear penalty, we also had a similar incident on the same player and the referee gave a free-kick, and a yellow card to a Gor Mahia player.

"Whoever was in the game can tell you the penalty decision was correct, and can also tell you Gor Mahia deserved to lose, they cannot win all their matches."

Gor Mahia are currently third on the table with 18 points.