Harambee Stars, against all odds, overcame poor preparations and injury setbacks to hold mighty Pharaohs of Egypt 1-1 away in Alexandria with Michael Olunga netting the all-important goal in a fascinating 2021 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifiers opener.
Mahmoud Abdelhamid Soliman scored for the hosts at the peak of the opening half, but the spirit to share the spoils was not extinguished amongst the Stars. A 41st minute miscalculated back-pass by Gor Mahia midfielder Lawrence Juma, who was making his debut in the senior team in a competitive match, cost Kenyans dearly as Soliman dodged past an advancing Ian Otieno in Stars goal to slot the ball in an empty net, before Olunga intervened later on.
Though playing away from home, the Stars were brave and could have snatched a win with winger Ayub Timbe being denied by the Egyptian goalie after dancing his way past several markers to unleash a pin-point shot. Stars looked comfortable against the hosts especially after soaking the initial stages pressure.