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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Elite runners stay away as Kenya to select
team for Commonwealth Games

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya are facing the dilemma of entering a second stream team to the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games after senior elite runners failed to get accreditation.

Top names including Rio Olympic 800m champion David Rudisha, Olympic 10,000m silver medalist Paul Tanui, National Cross Country champion Stacy Ndiwa, World U18, 400m silver medalist Mary Moraa are only a few of the top names missing out from the Kenya team list.

Athletics Kenya Spokesman Evans Bosire however has not ruled out convincing organizers of the Commonwealth Games to grant them special accreditation and entry.

“The deadline is expired, but we will not rule them out yet. We are in negotiation with organizers of the games to see how we can bring them in. Should that fail, then we will just stick to those athletes that are available and cleared to run in Gold Coast,” said Bosire on Wednesday.

Kenya has been allocated 65 slots and Bosire took issues with the limited quota saying the country is a giant in track and field and should not be constrained with a cap on how many they need to enter in the games.

“We need athletes in all disciplines, especially the sprint and field events,” he added.

Kenya has won 220 Commonwealth Games medals, mostly in athletics and boxing. In the last championships in Glasgow, Scotland, the country claimed 25 medals - 10 gold, 10 silver and five bronze.

There were two more bronze medals from boxing and Paralympics. This was a drop in performance compared to 2010 Delhi Games where Kenya had 33 medals - 12 gold, 11 silver and 10 bronze.

On Saturday, Kenya will hold a trial to select the team to Gold Coast Club Games with about 200 athletes ready to compete for the 65 slots allocated to Kenya for the Games slated for April 4-15 in Australia.

The first three athletes to cross the finish line in the middle and long distance races will make the team. Kenya have been allocated only 125 participants in this year’s Commonwealth Games.  

The new quota means a reduction from 195 participants that took part in 2014 edition in Glasgow, Scotland with athletics taking the lion’s share in the team with 66 athletes.

             

 

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