Kenya relinquishes World Under-20 overall title, finishes fourth in Cali

NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 7 – What was expected to be a golden harvest for Kenya on the final day of the World Under-20 Championships in Cali, Colombia, ended to be a frustrating evening as the countr relinquished the overall title and finished fourth.

Kenya missed out on gold in all the four finals they were involved in, only winning silver and bronze in the women’s 1500m while the men’s 800m and steeplechase as well as the women’s 5,000m ended in disappointment with no medals.

Ethiopia finished ahead of Kenya despite winning 10 medals as well, by virtue of having more gold; five.

The performance in Cali was a far cry from the performance in Nairobi last year where Kenya had a harvest of 16 medals, eight of them gold.

Jamaica finished top of the standings after a harvest of 14 medals; six gold, five silver and three bronze.

The USA finished second with 13; five gold, four silver and four bronze.

Poor tactics from the Kenyan athletes on the final day was the biggest let down. In the 5,000m, the duo of Jane Chacha and Maureen Cherotich employed an explosive pace from the start, but they were spent forces in the final three laps of the race allowing the Ethiopians to take charge.

They finished sixth and seventh respectively, slightly over a minute behind the winner, Medina Eisa of Ethiopia.

The 800m was a huge disappointment for Noah Kibet who finished second from last. He had come into the race with a huge potential having earned experience from the World Championships, but could not replicate that on the track as he finished off the medals.

Kenya also relinquished the steeplechase title as the duo of Emmanuel Wafula and Harun Kibet failed to sparkle, finishing sixth and 10th respectively. The race was won by Ethiopia’s Samuel Duguna.

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