Two-time world junior champion Celliphine Chespol who was Kenya’s only hope in the women's 3000m steeplechase, finished 13th at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon early this morning. This is sadly the first time the country has failed to win a women's steeplechase medal since it was introduced as a world event.
Photo: Athletics News
However, Kenyan-born Norah Jeruto won gold for Kazakhstan in the same final.
Jeruto clocked the third fastest time in history and a championship record of 8min 53.02sec, with Ethiopian Werkuha Getachew claiming silver in a national record of 8:54.61.
A second Ethiopian, Mekides Abebe, took full advantage of a mistake by Kenyan-born Bahraini Winfred Mutile Yavi on the final water barrier, to snatch bronze (8:56.08).
Photo: Athletics News
This has been the state of affairs in the world athletics competitions in the recent past, as many more Kenyan athletes continue to renounce their citizenship.
Lonah Salpeter, who took home a silver medal in the women’s marathon in Eugene is among Kenyan elite athletes who decided to compete for other countries for various reasons.
A few years ago, Ruth Jebet earned Bahrain a first-ever gold medal, in the Olympic competition, making history for the country.
But why is this becoming such a worrying trend in the motherland of renowned athletes?
“There are so many talented Kenyans, some who are way better than me. That means that to even make it to the national competitions where one at least stands a chance of winning and getting picked to represent the country in international competitions is very slim,” Miriam Jeptoo who changed her name to Alia Basma while revealing why she decided to run for Bahrain.
Other athletes cited a lack of quality training facilities and lack of motivation in terms of bonuses and welfare. Such frustrations include the recent Ferdinand Omanyala’s.
Bahrain, Qatar, Turkey, and the United States, are some of the countries that have poached many Kenyan athletes.
More than 10 Kenyan runners including 3,000m steeplechase runner, Winfred Mutile Yavi, Rose Chelimo, Eunice Kirwa, Miriam Jeptoo, and John Koech opted to run for Bahrain.
Former 5,000m champion Benard Lagat, Jonah Koech, Hillary Bor, and Marius Kimutai are other athletes who were previously adopted by foreign nations.
Is the Kenyan government killing talent? Food for thought!