Kenya’s athletics team arrives at JKIA to a hero’s reception
Team Kenya received a hero’s welcome at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), after finishing second in the just concluded IAAF World Under 20 Championships in Bydgoszcz, Poland.
Family and friends gathered at the arrivals and braved the scorching sun as they eagerly awaited the athletes to arrive on Tuesday.
Athletics Kenya (AK) officials led by their President Lt. General (RTD) Jackson Tuwei could not hide their joy as they went to receive them at the arrival lounge.
When the team finally checked out, the anxious parents could not hide their joy as they rushed to greet the freshly minted champions with mursik, sinedet and red rose flowers.
1500m champion Kumari Taki and 3000m steeplechase golden girl Celphine Chepteek were all smiles when they were carried shoulder high by their relatives who were extremely excited to see them back safe and sound with gold in their bags.
Proudly showing off his gold medal Taki explained the techniques he used to make sure nobody denied him his second 1500m title at the championship.
“Taresa (Tolosa) did not make me trip. When I looked at the screen I saw Taresa had passed Kiptoo (Anthony ) and he was almost passing me so I had to put all I could in the race to let him win. So I decide to dive and take the title,” he told with a smile.
3000m Steeplechase golden girl Chepteek could not hide her tears of joy when she was swept off the ground in dance and praises.
“I’m very happy with the reception; I have brought home a gold medal. At first I had panicked but in the last lap I felt very energetic and sprinted. I thank everyone who came to welcome me here,” Said Chepteek.
The team was later hosted by the Sports Arts and Culture, Cabinet Secretary Dr. Hassan Wario for lunch in a posh hotel in Nairobi.
The team finished 2nd after USA with a total of nine medals; with five gold medals, two silver medals and two bronze medals.
The gold medalist include Kipyegon Bett (800m), Kumari Taki (1500m), Rodgers Kwemoi (10,000m), Amos Kirui (3000m s/c) and Celliphine Chepteek (3000m s/c), while Willy Kiplimo (800m) and Emmaculate Chepkirui (5000m) bagged silver medals as Anthony Kiptoo and Wesley Ledama took the 1500m and 5000m bronze medals.
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