Kenyan international Ayub Timbe got playtime for the first time this season in the Chinese top flight after recovering from injury, but not even his inclusion could lift his team, Beijing Renhe as they suffered a 1 – 3 home loss at the hands of Guangzhou R&F on Saturday 18 May.
Timbe started from the bench in the game, only to come on in the 63rd minute replacing Wang Xuanhong but not even his introduction would do much for the side.
Nigerian forward Sone Aluko handed Beijing Renhe the perfect start to the game with a second minute goal but that lasted just until the 38th minute when Argentine Dia Saba restored parity.
Another Argentine Aran Zahavi put the hosts in the lead in the 50th minute before Saba completed the comeback with the third goal in the 72nd minute.
Timbe was a key player for Renhe last season, scoring seven goals in 14 appearances.
With the game, Renhe had a perfect chance of rising from the bottom of the log but they will have to contend with a few more weeks of possibly remaining there, having picked just five points from the opening 10 matches.
On the positive side though, Timbe’s return is a boot for Kenya national team head coach Sebastien Migne, who wants to assemble his best players for the 2019 African Cup of Nations (AFCON).
Timbe, who has not featured at all under Migne, is among the players called up in the provisional team for the tournament set to be hosted in Egypt.