The Star (Nairobi)

Kenya: Camp Dispanded

Athletics Kenya (AK) have cancelled the residential training camp for the provisional cross country team named 10 days ago. AK president Isaiah Kiplagat said most of the athletes selected are not keen on the camp.

He said most athletes in the provisional squad have indicated that they wanted to train on their own ahead of the national championship. Besides, the AK boss said the provinces have not concluded their cross country events.

"We decided that it is not economically viable and even from training point of view, it will not make sense just to have a handful of athletes in the camp. That is why we decided to cancel the camp all together," added Kiplagat.

He said athletes want to train under their various individual coaches as they seek be in top shape ahead of the national trials next month. " I can understand where the athletes are coming from.

Their goal is to represent the country at the world event and they are doing everything they can to ensure come next month, they are in good shape," he added.

Kiplagat expressed confidence that Kenya will still be force to reckon at the world cross country event in Poland in March. " I must say selection of the team will be difficult. We have had very competitive series. I have also attended the Prisons and Police cross country events and we expect a very strong team for the world event," he added.

The AK chief said he also expects a competitive provincial championships across the country in remaining few weeks before the championship.

He said preparations for the national championships are on course and the sponsor Kenya Commercial Bank has set aside Sh1.4m for it.

Kiplagat noted that Kenya will be the team to beat at the World cross country event in Poland.He reiterated Kenya's aim at the March 24 world cross was to replicate the performance of 2010 in the same Polish city, where the country scooped all individual and team gold medals on offer in a record-breaking performance.

"We are going back to Bydgoszcz and we hope that we should be able to win the eight gold medals again. I want to assure you that we shall run the programme well and professionally."

The Kenyan team for the second biennial world cross is scheduled to begin residential training from February 25 to March 18 before leaving for the global event.

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