Kisumu set to host first Athletics Kenya track and field meeting

Cross country Beatrice Chebet leads women's 6km race during the AK Cross Country Championships at Post Grounds. [Dennis Okeyo]

This will be one of the events before the planned Commonwealth Games trials

The lakeside city competition will be a one day event featuring only sprints, 800m and field events.

Moi Stadium in Kisumu is set to host the season opener of Athletics Kenya track and field events on Friday as runners step up Commonwealth Games trials preparations for next year.  

Athletics Kenya opted to start the 2017/2018 calendar season early owing to the Commonwealth Games slated for April 8-15 in Gold Coast, Australia.

AK director of competitions Paul Mutwii disclosed this when he released the calendar of events in September, saying that four of the eight track and field competitions will be held before the Commonwealth Games trials planned for March. Track and field competitions will resume after the Club Games with Regional and Institutional meetings across the country. 

Mutwii said: "We have ongoing cross country series and we are using long distance runners in those meetings. The runners being involved are of 1,500 meters to 10,000 meters that’s why we are excluding them from the first meeting. So, the meeting have mainly sprinters to 800 meters and all field events."

AK Nyanza North Region boss Joseph Ochieng said everything is in place to ensure athletes get quality competition despite the major changes.

“We are inviting the sprinters and field events athletes all over the country to the event. We hope to have competitive event on Friday. It’s unfortunate we will not have a two-day championships but this is great opportunity for the sprinters to get used to competition ahead of the national trials for commonwealth in February next year,” said Ochieng.

Kisii will host the second leg on December 1-2 followed by Machakos on December 15-16 while Eldoret will mark the end of the first phase of track and field events on December 29-30.

Nyanza North also is set host several other events that including World Aids Day December 1, followed by Kisumu City National Marathon December 17. [Dennis Okeyo]

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