31 July 2017

‘Missing’ Kenyan athletes included in London 2017 team

Four Kenyan athletes that failed to report to an Athletics Kenya (AK) training camp have been included in the squad for the London 2017 International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships, despite new testing and whereabouts requirements introduced by AK earlier this month. On 25 July, Kenyan team coach, Julius Kirwa, urged AK to take action against Irene Cheptai, Agnes Jebet, Eunice Sum and Margaret Chelimo after they failed to report for a pre-event training camp in Nairobi. However, all four are included in the IAAF’s official list of Kenyan athletes for London 2017 (PDF below).

“We haven’t heard from the athletes since the national trials and we don’t know where they are and their state. AK must take decisive action against them,” Kirwa told Xinhua news agency. On 4 July, AK announced new measures designed to ensure that athletes competing in London have complied with IAAF requirements. ‘The athletes are supposed to have been tested at least three times this year and should have provided an update of their where-about during their preparations period’, read a statement. ‘During a meeting at Riadha House […] the federation reminded the athletes that those who had not fulfilled the IAAF requirements will be replaced or their slots forfeited’.

On 28 July, AK announced its 50-strong team for London 2017, after the Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya (ADAK) said it had met a final deadline of Saturday 29 July to meet anti-doping guidelines. “We are happy to announce that all the doping procedures have been completed today and we are ready to depart for London on Tuesday”, Athletics Kenya Chairman Jackson Tuwei told reporters. Tower also said that middle distance runner Michael Saruni will miss London 2017 due to issues with his registration form.

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