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Tue, 10 Jul 2018 13:08 - Updated Tue, 10 Jul 2018 13:08

Kenya adds two sprinters for Africa Championships

NAIROBI-- Kenya's top sprinters Mike Mokamba and Fresha Mwangi have been added to the national team that is preparing for the Africa Championships that will be held in Asaba, Nigeria in August.

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Their inclusion means a total of 66 Kenyan athletes will be entering the biannual continental championships. The top two athletes in each discipline qualify to represent Africa at the World Cup (IAAF Continental Cup) which will be held in Ostrava, the Czech Republic in September.

Sprints coach Stephen Mwaniki said the two runners will add some steel to the Kenyan team as they intend to diversify and widen the medal scope from the middle and long distance races.

"They have secured the qualifying times and have shown real commitment in training. They merit being in the Kenyan team and hopefully, their performance will be top class [in order] to help us win more medals," said Mwaniki on Tuesday in Nairobi.

Kenya finished second overall in the last championships in Durban, South Africa, winning 24 medals - eight gold, eight silver and eight bronze. Hosts South Africa reigned supreme with 33 medals, while Nigeria finished third with 16 medals.

Mokamba, who will compete in the 200 meter and 4x100m relay, will be making his second appearance at the tournament, having reached the semifinal of the 200 meter event in 2016.

Mwangi, who also made her continental debut in 2016, also reaching the semifinals, will feature in the 100 meter and 4x100m relay.

Mokamba, who skipped the national trials, has landed the wild card spot and will join forces with Peter Mwai in the 200 meter event.

World and Commonwealth Games 1,500m champion Elijah Manangoi and Olympic 5,000m silver medalist Hellen Obiri will captain the Kenyan team at the continental championships which will run from August 1-5,XINHUA.

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