Eleven athletes have been dropped from the African Games-bound athletics team despite the assurance from the Sports Principal Secretary Kirimi Kaberia on Tuesday that there will be no reduction.
Team manager Dimmy Kisalu delivered the sad news to the athletes just after they had taken breakfast at the Luke Hotel where the team has been residing for over a week now.
Among those dropped is Robert Kiprop, who won men’s 5,000m winners during the trials where he clocked 13:37.31, which was outside the qualifying mark of 13:30.00.
The team is now left with the World Under-20 and Africa 5,000m champion Edward Zakayo and 2017 World Cross Country Under-20 bronze medallist Richard Kimunyan.
Former Africa 400m hurdles bronze medallist Maureen Jelagat and sprinters national 100m champion Joan Cherono, Freshia Mwangi and Gladys Musyoki have been left out alongside 110m hurdler Caroline Waiganjo.
Jelagat, Cherono and Mwangi were late inclusions after they failed their quest at the trials.
Cherono was included in the 200m team that already had Maureen Thomas and Eunice Kadogo while Jelagat was to join Fancy Kerubo and Jane Chege in the 400m hurdle.
Mwangi was to race in 4x100m event with Musyoki joining the 4x400m team while Waiganjo’s event was open hence no qualifying time.
Also to be axed are Peter Mwai (4x100m), Kiprono Kosgei (110m hurdles), Jared Momanyi (4x400) and Alphas Kishoyian (4x400) and Bethwel Lagat (long jump).
Deputy team manager Shem Kororia was among six officials who have been left out. The rest are coaches Silas Kiambata, Isaac Kirwa, Abraham Kiplimo, Gideon Nyangechi and James Saurey.
Athletics will now be represented by a contingent of 75 that comprises 69 athletes and six officials.
“The Games management have insisted that our quota is 75 with no additional even after we were told to add more athletes upon request,” said Kisalu. “It’s unfortunate that we have to send some athletes home and it's demoralising.”
The coaches remaining with the team are Julius Kirwa, Joseph Ngure, James Mutisya, Elizabeth Olaba and Elkana Nyang'au.