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Ugandans wary of false start rule

By | July 17th 2010

By FeverPitch Reporter

As Kenya technical bench struggles to tune sprinters into winning outfit, the modified ‘false start’ rule is threatening their Ugandan counterparts as the country prepares for the 17th African Senior Athletics Championships in Nairobi.

According to a Ugandan daily, national sprint coach Noah Ssengendo is concerned about the way his sprinters move out of blocks and their stretching.

Ssengendo is worried that the inability by his runners to perfect the correct use of start blocks might cost Uganda medals. The new rule calls for an immediate disqualification for an athlete who bursts out of the blocks before the start gun goes off.

"The only chance they get to use the start blocks is in competitions. This means that they do not get the time to develop that confidence," said Ssengendo.

"We are concentrating on giving them that confidence in how to leave the blocks," he explained at Kyombogo ground where the team is training.

"We are concentrating on this and how they can stretch better since these are the basic missing links. We will then go out and handle their running through the curve and other tactics," he said.

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Technical head Faustin Kiwa said that foreign-based athletes including Sarah Nambawa, Janet Achola, who is currently in Germany and the trio of Benjamin Kiplagat, Moses Kipsiro and Stephen Kiprotich, who are training in Europe would be in the country this weekend.

Meanwhile, officials of the Local Organising Committee have been running up and down in the past five days to tie up loose ends for the event.

They were at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport on Wednesday to arrange how teams will file through Immigration sections without red tape.

Hotels set aside for the teams are Red Court, Ole Sereni, Panafric and Hill Park.

The championships will be preceded by an IAAF Media Seminar at the Nyayo National Stadium.

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