The chase is on: World Under-18 and Africa Under-20 trials on at Nyayo Stadium

By Dennis Okeyo: Tuesday, June 13th 2017 at 00:00 GMT +3 | Athletics
Junior Cross Country runner Immaculate Chepkirui leads Lilian Kasait in their training session in Kigari, Embu County on March 16, 2017.[PHOTO:DENNIS OKEYO/STANDARD]

Chepkirui leads budding stars in battle for tickets in two-day championships.

It's all systems go as Athletics Kenya conducts double trials to select teams for IAAF World U18 and Africa Under-20 Championships today at Nyayo Stadium.

Immaculate Chepkirui, a member of Team Kenya to the IAAF World Cross Country Championship in Kampala and World Under-20 and 5000m bronze medallist Wesley Ledama are among the over 400m athletes expected to light up the two-day trials as they seek positions in the Team Kenya World under 18 championships slated for July 12-16 at Moi Internation Sports Centre, Kasarani

In the Africa championships, IAAF World Under-20 bronze medallist Sheila Chelangat, Nixon Kiplagat and Davis Kiplangat are some of the top names that will be seeking to land the coveted tickets to the Africa Under-20 Championships to be held on June 29 to July 2 in Tlemcen, Algeria.

The first two top finishers in all events will make the national team, while as the host nation for the IAAF World U-18, Kenya will field athletes in all events.

The Under-20 event will have 3,000m steeplechase, 5,000m and 10,000m events for both women and men.

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"We will be having two trials to select teams for Africa and the World championships. The basis of selection will be the first two to cross the line. In Youth Championships, we don't have 3000m steeplechase, 5,000m and 10,000m events, but in the junior races, we will have the three events."

"In the Youth Championships, Kenya, being the host country, will field athletes in all the 20 events except pole vault," said Athletics Kenya Youth Committee Chairman Barnabas Korir.

Kenya finished second, behind USA, with 13 medals; five gold, four silver and four bronze at the previous competition in 2015 in Cali, Colombia.

With the absence of the defending champions, who withdrew from the championships citing insecurity concerns, makes Kenya as clear favourites.

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