World 3,000m steeplechase champion Ezekiel Kemboi is back in the country a week after he joined Team Kenya in training at the Bristol University in Great Britain.
A source at the Kasarani camp disclosed that the erratic summer weather in Bristol has forced the 2004 Olympic 3,000m steeplechase champion to return to Kenya.
“I have spoken to Kemboi and he told me there was no place for him to train in Bristol. The rainy and cold conditions made it difficult for him to plan,” the source said.
“He told me places outside the university are all tarmacked and hard hence not conducive since we are used to a soft training ground. He told me someone can be easily sustain an injury from the hard ground and he therefore decided to fly back,” explained the source.
Team Kenya chief executive officer, Stephen Soi, who is in London, however said they saw it wise to allow Kemboi to fly back home since it wasn’t possible for him to train alone in Bristol while the rest of the team is in Nairobi.
“The miserable weather has also been a problem. One can’t know when it will rain and we have been forced to carry umbrellas virtually everywhere. These are not the normal summer conditions,” Soi explained.
Soi said the sprinters in Bristol would be the first to move to the Olympic Village on Friday after participating in a championship that was planned to be held on Wednesday in Cardiff, Wales.
Boxers Benson Gicharu (flyweight) and Elizabeth Andiego (middleweight), who have been in Cardiff for a specialised International Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA) camp since July 4 will move straight to the Olympic Village on Tuesday next week.
Also set to join the Olympic Village on Tuesday next week are Dunford brothers David and Jason, who have requested to be allowed to continue using the swimming facility in Bristol.
Javelin thrower Julius Yego left on Tuesday for Finland where he will compete in two championships before rejoining the team at the Olympic Village. The first competition was due on Wednesday, with the next planned for Sunday.
Kenyan sprinters in Bristol
Besides Yego, other athletes in Bristol are Joyce Zakary, Maureen Jelegat, Vincent Mumo, Mark Mutai, Vincent Kosgei and Bonface Mucheru, all under long distance coach Bruce Lati. There are also over 18 officials in Bristol, led by chief de mission Jonathan Koskei, general team manager James Chacha and Soi.