No fewer than 60 Kenyan athletes are expected to feature in the forthcoming 21st Senior African Athletics Championships in Asaba, Delta, from August 1 to 5.
The Head Media and Publicity Sub-Committee, Olukayode Thomas, said Kenya’s top athletes were expected at the event.
He said that Kenya would host a three-day national competition/trials in Nairobi to select its team to Asaba from June 21 to June 23.
He added that after a discouraging outing at the last Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, Kenyans were eager to make a big statement in Asaba with their ‘A’ athletes.
The President, Athletics Kenya, Jack Tuwei, said they would take the Asaba 2018 event seriously since the top two runners from each discipline would qualify for the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) Intercontinental Cup.
The IAAF competition is scheduled for September 8 to 9 in Ostrava, the Czech Republic.
“The Intercontinental Cup is the biggest competition and we want most of our athletes to qualify.
“That is why we are keen to have the strongest team selected on merit to travel to Nigeria,’’ an Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) statement quoted Tuwei as saying in the Kenyan media.
It said that top athletes like Elijah Manangoi, a 1,500m world record holder, Wycliffe Kinyamal, a 800m Commonwealth winner are expected.
Others expected to make the cut for the championships are Helen Obiri, the Olympic 5,000m silver medallist, Margaret Nyairera, an Olympic bronze and Commonwealth Games 800m silver medallist.
The statement said that Alice Aprot, a World Cross Country silver medalist also intended to atone for her absence at the Commonwealth Games with victory at the Africa Athletics Championships.
South Africa placed first with 33 medals, Kenya finished second, while Nigeria was third with 16 medals at the last edition.
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