Brave Kenya overall African athletics champions

Wednesday March 18 2020

Kenya's 4x400m relay teams pose for photos at the end of the Africa Athletics Championships in Asaba, Nigeria on August 5, 2018. PHOTO | ELIAS MAKORI |


Team Kenya weathered the difficulties they encountered on arrival to chalk their best ever show at the 21st Africa Athletics Championships since the 1982 Cairo event when they topped the medal standings in Asaba on Sunday.

The men’s 4x400m relay’s team victory gloriously wrapped up the country’s glorious outing in Asaba, Delta State, Nigeria with a haul of 19 medals: 11 gold, six silver and two bronze medals (11-6-2).

Kenya's gold medallists were: Hellen Obiri (5,000m), Conseslus Kipruto (3,000m steeplechase), Samuel Gathimba (20km race walk), Julius Yego (javelin), Elijah Manangoi (1500m), Winny Chebet (1500m), Edward Zakayo (5,000m), Beatrice Chepkoech (3,000m steeplechase), Mathew Sawe (high jump), Stacey Ndiwa (10,000m) and men's 4x400m relay.

Emmanuel Korir (800m), Grace Wanjiru (20km race walk), Timothy Cheruiyot (1500m), Celliphine Chespol (3,000m steeplechase), Alice Aprot (10,000m) and women's 4x400m relay bagged silver while Fancy Cherono (3,000m steeplechase) and women's 4x100m relay team settled for bronze.

It was the fourth time Kenya topped the medal standings after the 1982 Cairo (12-10-12), 1984 Rabat (10-6-3) and 2010 Nairobi (10-7-8).

Interestingly, Steve Mwaniki, who guided Team Kenya to victory in 2010 was once again appointed the head coach for Asaba 2018.

Kenya, who collected six gold, three silver and one bronze medals on the final day on Sunday, edged out South Africa to second place with 30 medals: nine gold, 13 silver and 30 bronze as Nigeria settled third with 19 (9-5-5).

Teams to Asaba had to endure up to four days delay in Lagos as the organisers failed to provide local transport.