Upcoming athletes from Coast region call for more support


Upcoming athletes from Coast region call for more support
Athletics Kenya Mombasa County chairperson Anisa Abdallah helps sprinter Benson Kombe tie his running shoes at Coast Region Kijiwetanga camp for the World Under-20 Championships at Kijiwetanga Primary School, Malindi, Kilifi County. Kombe was among the juniors who also received cash and food donations from Athletics Kenya.

In Summary

  • Upcoming athletes in Coast region are in dire need of help in order to realise their potential.
  • The young athletes have showed lots of promise especially in sprint, and will need an extra helping hand to achieve their dreams.

Upcoming athletes in Coast region are in dire need of help in order to realise their potential.

The young athletes have showed lots of promise especially in sprint, and will need an extra helping hand to achieve their dreams.

The 2008 National Secondary School Games 200m champion Katana Chaleo and the 2019 National Primary School 100m and 200m champion Benson Kombe are some of the promising talents from the region who have the potential to become world beating stars.

Others are Beatrice Karisa, the 2019 National Secondary School Games  100m  and 200m finalist and 2019 National Primary School Games 4x100m gold medallist Muktar Farhan.

Athletics Kenya (AK) Coast region chairman Dimmy Kisalu said the region is endowed with sprints talents which over the years have gone untapped.

Kisalu revealed that most of the athletes do not have the basic equipment for training including running spikes.

“We have in the recent past produced national primary and secondary school champions but don’t go far owing to many obstacles including lack of proper training equipment,” said Kisalu.

The lack of qualified trainers in the region has not helped either as most juniors remain ignorant of basic rules of the sport.

“We urged the national office to organise for a camp at the Nyayo National Stadium for their juniors to familiarise themselves with starting blocks and running spikes,” said AK Coast region secretary general Felix Ngala.

“We lack basic things like training shoes and track suits. Neither have I had the opportunity of being handled by a qualified sprints coach,” said Kombe, a Form One student at ACK Canon Mweri Memorial Secondary School in Malindi.

His sentiments were echoed by Farhan, the 2019 National Primary School 110m hurdles silver medalist.

“We can go far in sprints if we are to get help with running apparels and good coaches because we have the talents. We have been running barefoot for long and we are now calling for our federation and government to assist us,” said Farhan.

The athletes called upon AK and the government to come to their rescue and provide them with running shoes as well as technical assistance as they prepare to topple other regions.

The athletes on Saturday received food and cash donations from AK Youth and Development sub committee led by Barnaba Korir.

Also present were Kilifi County deputy commissioner Thuo wa Ngugi, and AK Coast region leadership led by Kisalu (chairman), Ngala (Secretary General), and county chairpersons; Anisa Abdullah (Mombasa), Jarha Tenda (Tana River) and Joshua Malingi (Kilifi).

With Athletics Kenya (AK) having established a training camp for more than 30 junior athletes at Kijiwetanga Primary School in Malindi, Kilifi County, the region was hoping to make a breakthrough at the World Under-20 Championships that were scheduled for July 7-12 in Nairobi.

However, with the event now postponed due to coronavirus, it is back to the drawing board for the budding athletes who were seeking to fight for slots in the national team.

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Story By Gilbert Kiprotich
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