Vipers needed a second half strike from new signing Ibrahim Kayiwa to salvage a draw against Bright Stars in their league opener at Nakivubo stadium on Friday.The Venoms came into the game as favourites but were stunned by the Lato Milk-sponsored Brights Stars as the visitors took the lead after 37 minutes.
New recruit from Sadolin Paints, Fred Ssegujja, capitalized on a defensive mix-up in the Vipers area to slot home.
Vipers’ goalie Ismail Watenga was unable to tame a cross from Seif Batte and his defenders Halid Lwaliwa and Shafik Bakaki failed to clear danger as Segujja slotted home.
The Uganda Cup winners had earlier tested goalie Nicholas Ssebwato through Joseph Semujju but that was all to show for a first half in which they bossed possession.
The situation remained similar in the second half and it wasn’t until the 61st minute that the hosts replied.
Sebwato tipped Brian Nkuubi’s effort over the bar and from the resultant corner, Kayiwa nodded home with Dan Birikwalira bagging an assist.
The goal was an inspiration to the hosts, who slightly increased the tempo of the game and tested Ssebwato on three occasions but without fruits.
At one moment, Abdul Kanana cleared a goal-bound ball off the line with Ssebwato beaten by Nkuubi while Musa Esenu had his effort brush off the bar.
Vipers coach Abdallah Mubiru would have loved his reign at the Kitende-based side to start better, but he will for now settle in fourth place with one point after as many games.
Vipers’ next match is against Police while Bright Stars host Onduparaka.