Saturday, 19 May 2007

Ethiopian Athletics - Force to Reckon with

One of the country's that has threatened and indeed upset Kenyan athletes in major world events is our dear neighbours the Ethiopians. I have much respect for their breed of athletes because they show great patriotism and teamwork in major competitions such as the Olympics, World Athletics c'ships and such grand events. Our own athletes usually perform well at the Grand Prix events only to falter at the other competitions. It is usually disappointing having to watch these guys make laughing stock of the country as they out-do each other to change nationality ( did I hear someone say dual-citizenship...that's a good one !)
All the same, after the World Cross-country championships the Ethiopians have gone back to their camps and are launching some major onslaught on what might be a battle for supremacy at the forthcoming All-Africa Games, World Athletics Championships and Olympics next year in Beijing.
The Ethiopian government along with the Ethiopian Athletics Federation(EAF) have started development of 4 major training camps to help churn out athletes for these championships. Along with the Federation's main sponsor, Adidas, they will look out to continue its dominance in distance as well as improve performance in the shorter races such as the 800m, 1,500m and the 3,000m steeplechase for men and women, and also in the walking races.
Athletics Kenya are you watching this ? Basking in past glory is over & done with ! Better wake up and smell the coffee ( better still Ethiopian coffee!)
Check this out on
Quick News:
Kenyan half-marathon record holder Sammy Wanjiru was denied a visa into the UK forcinf him to pull out of Sunday's Great Manchester Run. The Kenyan, who is based in Japan, applied for his visa on 15 April but was denied entry to the United Kingdom. There were no explained reason and Athletics Kenya official David Okeyo has said they will send a protest note to the British.
It bothers me when the British start using dirty tactics and using bad publicity to gain advantage in sports. Some top official who had come for the World Cross-Country games in March had said that this year's competition was a huge risk having held it at low-altitude and heat-prone area of the Coast. He described next year's Games which incidentally will be held in his home country as X-country going back to its true home. Too bad ! I guess the world knows all too well which is the true Cross-Country Home !

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