With many elite Kenyan athletes giving this year’s African Games a wide berth, it’s encouraging to see that the country is sending a strong team to Rabat, where the track and field events start today.
The championships will be of added significance as a testing ground for the athletes who will compete in next month’s IAAF World Championships in Doha.
And coming soon after last week’s National Athletics Championships in Nairobi, the Games offer a vital stepping stone as the athletes graduate from the national to the continental level, hoping to eventually peak during the Doha global showcase.
These assignments should further boost our preparations for next year’s Tokyo Olympic Games.
Kudos to Team Kenya for the medals won in Rabat, so far, most significantly in the beach volleyball, taekwondo and mountain bike competitions.
The women’s volleyball team has had a bright start with victory over Africa champions Cameroon, who only recently defeated Kenya in the African Women’s Volleyball Championships final in Cairo.
We hope Team Kenya officials will maintain the momentum to ensure a seamless build-up to the Tokyo Olympics.
Also encouraging is the goodwill shown by President Uhuru Kenyatta, who last week met with various teams to wish them well in their forthcoming assignments.
We have often expressed the need to cast the net wider and not rely only on track and field events for medals, hence the significance of the early beach volleyball, taekwondo and mountain bike medals.
These medallists have shown promise and just need additional funding and exposure to help them fight for the podium in Tokyo.
With the National Sports Fund up and running, we hope that the perennial cash crunch that affects our sportsmen and women ahead of important assignments will be a thing of the past.
All the best, Team Kenya, and congratulations for the early medals.