NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya athletes must return to the drawing board
and hope to emerge stronger at the Commonwealth Games following
their dismal run at the World Indoor Championships, which ended
on Sunday in Birmingham, England.
The country could
only manage one bronze medal from Bethwell Birgen as the
eight-member team returns home dejected for yet another failed
attempt at the premier indoor championships.
“It is a wake-up
call. Things are getting tight and we have to up our game if we
have to continue competing at the top level,” Coach Julius Kirwa
In 2016 in Portland,
USA, Kenya claimed two bronze medals, but had to settle for a
single bronze in Birmingham as top names failed to live to their
expectations including World 5,000m champion Helen Obiri, who
was fourth in the women’s 3,000m race.
“It was not quite
the World Indoor Championships I wanted but I will keep working
to make myself the best I can be,” Obiri said Monday.
Though poor running
tactics, disqualification and visa hitch may take part of the
blame, Kenya still has serious concerns of its preparations and
what need to be done to improve the quality of the sport as
rival countries closes in.
Margaret Nyairera and Emmanuel Korir lost through technicality
with Nyairera having been disqualified for stepping outside the
lane, as compatriot Winny Chebet failed in her bid to qualify
from the heats.
Korir’s title quest
in 800m was nipped in the bud as he was denied a visa to travel
from New York to Birmingham.
This left Kenya
punching above their weight and could only secure one bronze
medal at the championships.
Now the country will
have time to recover and focus their energies on dominating the
Commonwealth Games, which will be held in Gold Coast, Australia
starting on April 4-15.