Monday’s athletics events at the ongoing 12th African Games in Rabat, Morocco will be shorn of three of the sport’s biggest stars as Kenya’s trio of Beatrice Chepkoech, Hyvin Kiyeng and Emmanuel Korir have all opted against participating in Africa’s version of the Olympics.
World record holder in the women’s 3,000 metres steeplechase Beatrice Chepkoech said her focus was on competing at the IAAF Diamond League in Zurich next Thursday, 29 August 29 and to prepare for the World Championships in Doha next month.
Hyvin Kiyeng, former world champion in the same event, and Emmanuel Korir, who was due to race in the men’s 400m reasons for shunning the tournament is not entirely clear.
Insidethegame.biz quotes Chepkoech as saying that “Kenya has enough talent, young energetic athletes bubbling with confidence, eager to showcase their talent. Let them carry the flag in Morocco.”
Kenya’s athletics coach Julius Kirwa says he will call up two replacements to join Mercy Wanjiku in their women’s steeplechase squad, while former national 400m champion Alphas Kishoyian has replaced Korir.