Marvin Oshaba was the hero as Tooro United made a winning return to the StarTimes Uganda Premier League after a slender 1-0 victory over Mbarara City in the Western derby.
Having missed out on action on the opening weekend of the 2021/22 season with their fixture against URA – who had continental engagements – rescheduled, Tooro marked their return to the top flight at the Buhinga Stadium.
The Entare za Tooro made a quick start and nearly took the lead inside the first minute as goalkeeper Muhamad Ssekeba made a mess of Hassan Mwanje’s shot but the keeper reacted quickly to keep out the rebound from Oshaba.
Oshaba ignited Tooro’s return party in the fifth minute as he sneaked beyond the Mbarara defenders at the near post to glance his header past Ssekeba.
The Ankole Lions grew more into the match after going behind. Jude Ssemugabi drew a smart save from Tooro goalkeeper Swaib Mawuya, who also pulled off a superb save to deny Henry Kitegenyi.
Mbarara City continued to be on the front foot after the break, but Tooro’s shots from save caused a couple of scares for Ssekeba, who was nearly caught out by Denis Ojera’s effort from over 35 yards.
Mbarara were lucky to retain their 11-men after Jasper Aheebwa only saw yellow for a high kick on Mark Nsubuga.
Oshaba could not to add to his first half goal as he failed to convert a penalty in the 87th minute, as Tooro eventually took all three points and a clean sheet much to the delight of their fans.
Meanwhile, Ashraf Mugume and Davis Kasirye scored first half goals as KCCA beat Gadaffi FC 2-1 at the MTN Omondi Stadium. Brian Kalumba scored the visitors’ only goal 10 minutes into the second half.
The Kasasiro Boys took only 19 minutes to take the lead through Mugume who curled a spectacular shot from outside the box for his second goal of the season in consecutive games.
They doubled their lead seven minutes to the halftime break when Kasirye rose highest to power home a header to continue his brilliant start to life at the club with his second goal of the season as well.
However, Morley Byekwaso’s men did not have a cruising evening as Kalumba halved their advantage in the 54th minute when Alex Kitatta won possession and set up the former to score his first goal for the club.
Gadaffi almost had their equaliser late on but Joel Madondo shot narrowly wide as the Kasasiro Boys held on for victory.
Elsewhere, Express FC’s shaky title defence suffered another blow as they suffered their second consecutive defeat of the season away to UPDF FC.
Musa Mudde scored from the penalty spot in the second half at the Bombo Barracks Grounds after Nicholas Kasozi handled the ball inside the penalty area.
The champions were without head coach Wasswa Bbosa who was serving the first of his three-match suspension, and without his leadership, they looked second best against the Army side who have now won back-to-back games against the Red Eagles.