Kenyan Judo team shines in Burundi EA tourney

KJA chairman, Shadrack Maluki and secretary, Joan Githua (front R and L) pose with the ...
KJA chairman, Shadrack Maluki and secretary, Joan Githua (front R and L) pose with the national team. PHOTO/Courtesy)

The National Judo team emerged second in the cadet category having garnered 15 medals; four gold, one silver and 11 bronze medals at the ongoing East African Judo Championships in Bunjumbura, Burundi.

Carlos Ochieng (60kg) and Geoffrey Mutai (90kg) each bagged gold as Stephen Marcus (50kg) claimed silver while Evans Omondi (55kg), Ouhsmman Ali (66kg) and Issac Muchai (90kg) were bronze medalists.

The women’s team accounted for the other eight medals with Emily Karisa (40kg) and Hannah Wanjiku (57kg) bringing home gold medals while Binti Hamisi (44kg), Anne Wairimu (52kg)  Easther Wanjiru (57kg), Evelyne Mulu and Margaret Njeri in the 63kg category and Jedidah Nekesa (70kg) bagged six bronze medals.

“This is the first time Kenya is attending such an event and the eastern region. We appreciate what the athletes did despite the challenges they faced like age cheating,” Kenya Judo Association official, Duncan Chemiryo said.

The event was marred by glaring cases of age cheating with the host country the accused party as they failed to ascertain their players’ ages while shifting blame to their registration department.

The event attracted five countries including the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Sudan, Djibouti, Rwanda, Kenya and Burundi.

The Kenyan team – which is expected back in the country on Tuesday – will continue its medal hunt in the junior category when they enter their second day on Sunday.

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Story By Charity Wanja
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