"They thought I wouldn’t be able to adapt to it because I was
so short," he said.
"I proved them wrong."
The 60,000 fans who thronged the Kasarani Stadium in Nairobi
on Sunday may have had a ringing in their ears for several hours
afterwards, thanks mainly to the exploits of Kenya’s Jackline
Wambui, who powered away to win the girls’ 800m and lead a 1-2
with teammate Lydia Jeruto Lagat.
Wambui’s winning time was 2:01.46, but in the mayhem that
gripped the stadium afterwards, no one was looking at the clock.
The Kenyan pair set off on a lap of honor, with thousands of
adoring fans chanting, cheering, waving and worshipping their
Another thing that made the vent memorable was the enthusiasm
of the fans.
Decked out in their national colours, Kenyan fans filed
through the gates of the stadium each day beaming with wide
smiles, extending their arms in welcome to the world’s best
athletes in this age catagory.
Their support was palpable anytime their nation’s athletes
took to the track or field.
Whether it was a high jumper clearing a bar in warmup, a
thrower unleashing a personal best in qualifying or a middle
distance athlete storming to victory, they roared in support all
week, creating an incredible atmosphere for live sports.
Now, the focus turns to the London World Championships in
Kenya Bask In Glory of
Successful World U-18 Championships
NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya sports officials are basking in the glory
of hosting one of the most successful World U18 champion-ships
in its history.
The officials now
want the world to take Kenya seriously as a sports destination.
President Jack Tuwei says the event success has unlocked the
potential the country has to stage other top competition even
beyond track and field.
Kenya spent over 2
billion U.S. dollars to stage the event including buying new
“We have proved to
the world that we have the fans and the stadium.
“Now we need to get
sponsors and bid for bigger competitions,” he said.
Championships and continental football competitions are on the
card, though the reluctance with the government to endorse such
bids remains the biggest hurdle.
During the five day
World Under-18 Championships in Athletics Kenya finished fourth
overall after bagging 15 medals in total (four gold medals,
seven silver and four bronze medals) behind South Africa, China
However the absence
of giants United States of America, Canada, Britain, New
Zealand, Australia, Switzerland and Japan leaves a lot to be
desired. The seven countries opted not to risk sending their
teams to Kenya citing security concerns.
But as the curtain
came down on the championship, Local Organising Committee
chairman Jack Tuwei said he was impressed with the standards
shown by Kenyan teams and organisers.
“I’m happy with our
team for emerging fourth overall though they had many medals
than other countries.
“They have done us
proud and that should be the way to go in future events,” said
He also said that
the success of the event showed that Kenya can host one leg of
the IAAF Diamond League Series and even the Senior World
Championships in Athletics.
“Our ability to
deliver this event to success has shown that we can even have a
Diamond League series or World Champ-ionships and I want to
thank the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF)
for believing in us,” added Tuwei.