• Kipchumba,Chesum qualify for Paralympics meet in Tunis

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Mar 12, 2012-

The Kenya Paralympic trials for the sixth International Athletics meet of Tunisia begun Monday with 800m,T46 All Africa Games bronze medalist,Jonathan Kipchumba being the first and only athlete to qualify in that category.

Kipchumba who overcame a nasty fall during his race at the All African Games in Mozambique last year to win the bronze medal beat John Njogu (2:28.3) and Samuel Otieno who timed 2:31.4 which was way out of the 2:18.0 qualifying time.

"It feels good to win the ticket, I know some athletes from Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria whom we ran with in Mozambique will try too challenge me but am looking forward to nothing sort of gold," said Kipchumba ,27, who also won bronze medal at the Great Lakes championship held in Nairobi in 2010 and also finished fourth in the Africa Athletics championship which took place in Morocco same year.

Jonah Chesum who won gold in the 1500m in Mozambique last year clocked 1:56.1 in the men's 800m T46 category beating opposition from Stephen Wambua(1:57.0) and Stanley Cheruiyot who beat the qualifying time by 02.5 stopping the timer at 2:00.0 to register his name in the 17 man squad that will represent Kenya in the Tunisia games.

Hillary Serum also made the cut, despite finishnig last when he clocked 2:01.2. Other players who expected to make it to Tunis are Wilson Bii, Erick Sang, Rodgers Kiprop, Francis Thuo and Protasio Mutuma who finished in that order in the men's 5000m,T11 category.

Eliud Kipyego (1:57.4) and Prisca Chepkemoi (13.9) topped the men's 800m, T12 and women's 100m, T11 respectively with Emmanuel Asinikal (2;00.0), Moses Kiplagat (20:1.0) and Zakayo Kamau (2:06.0) finished second, third and fourth respectively in the men's race while Pamela Lenasha and Nancy Chelagat clocked 14.2 and 14.4 respectively to finish behind Chepkemoi.

 So far 17 athletes ahave already qualified for London Olympic games and deputy Commissioner of sports, Steven Karinga said the country is faced with the challenge of beating the set rule of 3:1 ratio of men to women. Kenya is hoping to send a team of 34 to the London Paralympic games.

"We want to selct as many women as possible.According to the rules,no team that will shall not have met the required ratio of three men to one woman will be allowed to compete," said Karinga.

Presidential aspirant, Raphael Tuju who paid the teams a courtesy call on the first day of the trials which is being held at the Nyayo national stadium pledged Ksh. 100,000 for gold medal winner. The games will take place between March 22 and 29 in Tunis, Tunisia.

 

Elvince Joshua

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