Kirwa salutes move to reward coaches in London 2017


Julius Kirwa celebrates winning the coach of the year award during the Athletics Kenya (AK) ...
Julius Kirwa celebrates winning the coach of the year award during the Athletics Kenya (AK) gala awards at Panari hotel on December 07, 2016. Photo/Stafford Ondego/ www.sportpicha.com

Local track and field coaches have welcomed the move by world governing body the IAAF and the Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the London World Championships to award coaches of medal-winning athletes with medals.

Veteran Kenya Defense Forces coach Julius Kirwa said the move will motivate a lot of ‘hardworking’ coaches and will serve as a worthy recognition of their efforts in identifying, nurturing and training athletes.

“It’s a good gesture from the IAAF because these coaches help create world beaters. I also sit at the IAAF Coaches Council and we saw it will be good idea to recognize them globally,” Kirwa, a two-time recipient of the Athletics Golden Gala’s Coach of the Year award said.

His sentiments were echoed by Coach Bernard Ouma of Rongai Club in Kajiado County, who also coaches Olympian and 1,500m world silver medalist Elijah Managoi.

“We believe that it will last a lifetime if one is noticed for their efforts. It takes a lot of personnel to see that the athlete is at the podium. Appreciating the coach is the best 21st century gift we shall receive. I hope the federations and the Government will follow suit,” Ouma told Citizen Digital.

The coaches’ medal will be based upon similar themes to those of athletes but will differ in design with both set to be unveiled later this month.

The possibility of creating a coaching medal was investigated by the United Kingdom (UK) Athletics who form the LOC for the championships, and a request made of the IAAF who also gave them a gesture for their support.

The IAAF World Championships London 2017 will take place at the London Stadium from 4-13 August.

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