Kenyan stars begin chase for Commonwealth Games slots tomorrow


Kenya’s national athletics trials are explosive, often with a global distance running stature.

And that will be put to test at the Athletics Kenya national track and field national championships-cum-trials at Nyayo National Stadium from tomorrow – setting the stage for 20th Commonwealth Games that runs in Glasgow, Scotland, from July 23 to August 3.

The three-day showpiece, which brings together the 16 AK affiliates, will be teeming with a mix of new talents who will be up against a crowded field of elites.

Athletics Kenya will fashion one team to the Commonwealth Games and Africa Senior Athletics Championships, which is set for Marrakech, Morocco, in August.

David Okeyo, the AK Vice President in charge of competitions, said they decided to push the trials to allow athletes who will compete in Rome Diamond League ample time to chase for national team slots.

“We decided to merge the two events. But the athletes, who will compete in Rome, will arrive on June 6 and compete as guests only. They will neither compete for their various institutions nor even score points for them,” Okeyo said last week. AK wants to allow the 23 athletes taking part in the IAAF Diamond League in Rome tomorrow night and the same athletes will again be expected to participate in another IAAF Diamond League race in Oslo, Norway on June 11.

Okeyo said AK wants to offer an opportunity to the athletes to seek tickets for the Club Games and continental championships without interfering with their participation in the IAAF organised series.

“The athletes have signed contracts to run in the Diamond League and if they fail to take part may risk being sanctioned by the athletics world governing body,” Okeyo said.

He said the last date for registering by name with the National Olympic Committee of Kenya  for the Commonwealth Games is June 12 and that’s why they must act with speed.

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