RWANDA’S medal hopes at the on-going Youth Olympic Games in Singapore were dealt a severe blow after Potien Ntawuyirushintege and Jacqueline Murekatete failed to qualify in the 3000m yesterday.
The country’s main medal hopeful, Murekatete was disqualified on rule 163.3b for running in another athletes’ lane just 50m after the start.
Kenya’s Gladys Chesir won the qualification race after clocking a personal best time of 9.25.44. She was followed by Japan’s Moe Kyuma in 9.35.33 while Monica Florea of Russia recorded a personal best time of 9.39.00 to finish third.
In the men’s race, Ntawuyirushintege finished 11th in the qualification race, clocking 8.17.99. Ethiopian Fekru Jebesa won the race in a time of 8.12.65, Eritrea’s Abrar Osman finished second in a time of 8.12.80 while Hicham Sigueni clocked 8.12.90 to take third place.
Speaking to Times Sport from Singapore, Rwanda’s team Chef de Mission, Thierry Ntwali said, “Murekatete was disqualified because she stepped into another lane after being pushed by another competitor.
But from what we saw, she stepped into the other lane so as to gain her balance but the officials thought otherwise.”
Meanwhile, action continues tomorrow when Rwanda’s sole swimmer, Marie Claudine Iradukunda starts her medal expedition in the women’s 50m freestyle.
She has been placed in the third heat which comprises of Tanzania’s Mariam Mohammed, Bahamas’s Bria Deveaux, Jani Reni from Albanis and Josephine Blamo.
On Saturday, boxer, Haziza Matusi who is undergoing intensive training with his coach Gashugi Kananura will take into the ring.