Zanzibar Heroes were sent packing by Kenya after a dramatic shootout ended in 4-2 during the first semifinal of the Challenge Cup match played at the Nelson Mandela Stadium in Kampala yesterday.
Twice Kenya had to come from behind to equalize in regulation time and force the game to stretch into extra time.
The 2-2 draw prevailed even at the end of the extra time as shootout was inevitable to separate the two teams.
It was a gloomy day for the Islanders who squandered the first two penalties through Hamis Mcha and Ali Authman as Kenya shooters scored all the four penalties.
Mike Baraza who scored all equalizing goals for Kenya showed the way in the shootouts beating goalkeeper Mwadini Ali.
Mwadini would not repeat the heroics that brought the team to the semifinal stage after sending packing fancied Burundi during the quarterfinal.
Agrey Morris and Samih Nuhu were the only scorers for Zanzibar during the shootouts.
Zanzibar were the first to take the lead through Hamis Mcha when he beat Kenyan goalkeeper midway into the opening half. Barely five minutes had later Kenya responded through Mike Baraza to come back into the game. The score line prevailed up to the halftime mark.
Both teams tried hard to look for additional goal and it was Zanzibar who managed to go ahead through a penalty expertly taken by Morris after 75 minutes.
A Kenyan defender had brought down Zanzibar striker for referee to point the spot kick.
Poor defending and lack of concentration saw Zanzibar concede another goal through Baraza barely ten minutes to the end of the regulation time.
The teams were tied at 2-1 before extra half an hour was added to separate the teams.
No goal was scored during the extra time but Zanzibar played with ten men on the field after one player was sent off.
The Kenyans who are coached by James Namdwa cruised into the final for the first time in more than five years.
Kenya is expected to play against the winner of Uganda versus Mainland Tanzania whose semifinal was still in progress by the time we went to press.