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Friday, 28 March 2014

Kenyan Kings Back to Home After a Promising Performance

Kenyan victorious 2014 Africa Cross Country Championships team returned to their homeland after its stars promising performance at the tournament. Kenya flounced all eight gold medals in yet another commanding performance that left 25 other nations just to bow to the kings.

Soon after arrival, the squad of 24 runners and seven officials were treated to a luxurious luncheon in their honour. The squad put in its best efforts for their crowning achievement at the Kololo Ceremonial Grounds in March 2014. In a recurrence of their achievement at the 2010 World Cross and 2011 Africa Cross, the team won four individual and four team gold medals. The only defeat was at junior men bronze and junior women silver individual medals being eluded from their clinch.

The team beared the hopeful eyes of its fans having ascended to four world titles and two continental crowns as a junior, now the time was for two-time World Cross junior titleholder, Faith Chepng'etich and as always she bagged the top medal on her first foray as a senior in cross country. On victory, the 20-years-old Faith asserted, "I'm happy because I graduated well from junior to senior since it's not easy to go through all the stages from Youth to senior and win." She captained the senior women team told Capital Sport having won her race in 25:33.02 ahead of teammates Janet Kisa (25:41.30), Alice Aprot (25:46.48) and Edith Chelimo (26:02.48) who sealed the perfect ten.

Also, the former Winners' High School student is all geared up at medaling at the Scotland Commonwealth Games this summer having failed to scale the podium at the London 2012 Olympics and Moscow 2013 World Championships. She said, “I will give it my best and make sure I and Hellen Obiri, who won bronze at 2013 Moscow World Championships bring medals to our country if we will make it to the squad."
Kampala contingent also witnessed Moses Mukono and Agnes Jebet who won the men and women junior titles ensuring all national champions returned home with the top medal. Not to mention, Eritrea's Berhane Afewerki (22:56.45) was like a faint glow in a lost dark tunnel as he was the only individual among the Kenyans to nick individual bronze.

In the same vein, head coach David Letting commended his charges leaning them to form the core of future Kenya teams to international events such as World Youth and Youth Olympics Games scheduled for Nanjing, China in August. Though, Athletic Kenya (AK) President Isaiah Kiplagat, urged coaches and agents not to uncover young athletes to many races to avoid them burning out before they build careers. Kiplagat asserted, "Our athletes who won in Kampala are very young and this is their first ladder so I can comfortably say we have a team to depend on in future." He added, "I'm pleading to the coaches please don't destroy the athletes before they attain their potential to represent the country by taking them to many competitions since they have to be around for at least some time to survive in this sport.”

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